Percy Harvin

 

 

 

Hope you have been enjoying this series, predicting who will be starting at each position in 2013.  Of course there will be many changes based on the results of the draft in April, as well as other happenings during the off season, so I’ll re-visit each column later in the summer.  But for those of us in dynasty and keeper leagues, some shrewd moves early in the off season based on forward thinking can really pay off.  I’ll provide a list of the 2012 Receivers and the percentage of the total receptions they had in 2012, and then list who I think the top five receivers on each team will be and the percentage of catches I think each will get in 2013.  Keep in mind even if it’s not indicated in my team summaries, any team can take a wide receiver somewhere in the draft so especially the #3 to #5 wideouts could be replaced through the draft.  I’ve shown the backs and tight ends for reference as either can eat into a receiver’s production.

 

 

 

 

Time for the NFC.

 

 

Arizona Cardinals

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Larry Fitzgerald: 23%

Andre Roberts: 21%

Michael Floyd: 15%

Early Doucet: 9%

LaRon Byrd: 0%

 

Rob Housler(TE): 15%

LaRod Stephens-Howling(RB): 6%

William Powell(RB): 6%

 

Fitzgerald had somewhat of a miserable season, but with the new coaching staff and hopefully improved QB play he will turn it around.  Roberts has continued to improve and can still get better.  Floyd’s rookie season has to be viewed as successful even though his numbers may not reflect well on his first round draft selection.  Again poor QB play can be mostly blamed.  Look for him to continue his growth.  Doucet disappointed in 2012 but will stick around as depth.  Byrd looked good in camp a year ago and is probably poised to pass Doucet on the depth chart.  Kerry Taylor is also on the team for depth.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Larry Fitzgerald: 21%

Andre Roberts: 20%

Michael Floyd: 16%

LaRon Byrd: 9%

Early Doucet: 2%

 

 

Atlanta Falcons

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Roddy White: 22%

Julio Jones: 19%

Harry Douglas: 9%

Drew Davis: 1%

 

Tony Gonzalez(TE): 23%

Jacquizz Rodgers(RB): 13%

Jason Snelling(FB): 9%

Michael Turner(RB): 5%

 

For a pass first offense the Falcons are remarkably thin at wide receiver.  I guess having two of the games best along with a hall of fame tight end and a quality pass catching running back doesn’t leave many receptions available for the rest of the team.  White had a fantastic season, 2012 predictions of him being overtaken by Jones were unfounded.  At age 31 I’m sure we’ll see the same predictions in the coming pre-season but I think White will still be number one.  Jones did have a very successful season, making he and White arguably the top WR tandem in the NFL.  As the number three man Douglas doesn’t get a lot of targets, and really doesn’t do a lot with the ones he gets.  Davis has probably earned himself a shot at winning the number three spot in camp.  Kevin Cone, Kerry Meier, Marcus Jackson, Tim Toone and James Rodgers are all vying for no more than depth spots.  So much of what Atlanta does will depend on whether Tony Gonzalez hangs up his cleats.  They don’t have a tight end in the system anywhere near his caliber.  If Gonzalez stays look for the Falcons to pretty much be status quo at receiver.  If Gonzalez leaves the team will most likely be looking to add a decent receiver via free agency to take some of Gonzalez’ targets.  Drafting a receiver is also a possibility, but I believe Gonzalez comes back for one last shot at a title.  Update:  Gonzo has instructed his agent he wants to play one more year, consider him a top TE option for 2013.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Roddy White: 20%

Julio Jones: 19%

Tony Gonzalez:  18%

Harry Douglas: 5%

Drew Davis: 2%

Kevin Cone: 1%

 

 

Carolina Panthers

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Steve Smith: 26%

Brandon LaFell: 16%

Louis Murphy: 9%

Armanti Edwards: 2%

Kealoha Pilares: 1%

Joe Adams: 0%

 

Greg Olsen(TE): 25%

Mike Tolbert(FB): 10%

Jonathan Stewart(RB): 6%

DeAngelo Williams(RB): 5%

 

Smith was his usual productive self, but at age 33 I have to wonder when the Panthers will start thinking about his successor.  LaFell was supposed to be that guy but I have to think Carolina doesn’t see him that way anymore.  He’ll be the #2 man again in 2013 so he still has an outside shot at proving himself capable of stud WR status.  Murphy is a free agent and didn’t do enough in 2012 to earn himself a new contract.  I think Edwards will show in camp that he’s able to be an every down player.  Watch for him.  Pilares will likely remain as depth.  2012 4th rounder Adams will get another chance to show his upside in camp.  David Gettis will be lucky to hang onto his roster spot.  Lamont Bryant is pretty much in the same boat as Gettis.  Only one will probably get to stay.  Watch for Carolina to pick up a receiver in the draft.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Smith: 22%

LaFell: 17%

Edwards: 8%

Adams: 4%

New Guy: 3%

 

 

Chicago Bears

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Brandon Marshall: 45%

Earl Bennett: 11%

Alshon Jeffery: 9%

Devin Hester: 9%

Dane Sanzenbacher: 5%

Eric Weems: 1%

Johnny Knox: 0%

 

Matt Forte(RB): 17%

Kellen Davis(TE): 7%

 

Marshall was clearly the man in 2012, mainly out of necessity but also because he and Cutler continue to show remarkable chemistry.  Bennett is a bust, and won’t be kept at his current salary.  He takes a nice pay cut or he’s gone.  Jeffery showed he’s got the upside expected of a second round pick, but struggled to stay healthy.  Look for him to fill the role opposite Marshall in 2013.  Hester only sees action at wideout because the Bears don’t have anyone else.  Weems apparently took over primary return duties last season so most likely Hester will be released.  Sanzenbacher was waived late in the year and claimed by the Bengals.  Knox has retired due to back problems.  Joseph Anderson, Dale Moss, Brittan Golden and Terrence Toliver round out the receiving depth.  Some like Moss’ upside but I see Golden being the one to earn a spot in camp.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Brandon Marshall: 38%

Alshon Jeffery: 21%

Earl Bennett: 10%

Eric Weems: 6%

Brittan Golden: 4%

 

 

Dallas Cowboys

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Dez Bryant: 23%

Miles Austin: 16%

Kevin Ogletree: 8%

Dwayne Harris: 4%

Cole Beasley: 4%

Andre Holmes: 0%

 

Jason Witten(TE): 27%

DeMarco Murray(RB): 8%

Felix Jones(RB): 6%

 

Braynt put the offseason stuff behind him and had a breakout season.  Look for continued improvement in the coming year.  The Cowboys and Austin agreed to a more cap friendly contract re-structuring so obviously he’ll be back.  Everyone’s favorite week one waiver wire pickup showed us once again why we shouldn’t overreact to one big game.  He did very little after that, and as a free agent he will not be re-signed.  Harris had a decent season in limited action and should take over the #3 spot but he’ll have to earn it in camp.  Beasley will also have a shot at the #3 spot and as the better slot option I believe he’ll win out.  Holmes was waived in November and is now in New England.  Danny Coale, Donavon Kemp, Tim Benford, Anthony Armstrong, Jared Green and Carlton Mitchell are all on the roster.  Look for Coale to win out and get the last spot.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Dez Bryant: 24%

Miles Austin: 15%

Cole Beasley: 10%

Dwayne Harris: 4%

Danny Coale: 2%

 

 

Detroit Lions

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Calvin Johnson: 29%

Titus Young: 8%

Nate Burleson: 6%

Ryan Broyles: 5%

Kris Durham: 2%

Mike Thomas: 1%

Brian Robiskie: 1%

 

Brandon Pettigrew(TE): 14%

Joique Bell(RB): 12%

Tony Scheffler(TE): 10%

Mikel Leshoure(RB): 8%

 

Johnson was his usual Megatron self and you can bank on him being at least as productive in 2013.  After that things get pretty dicey.  Young’s well publicized antics got him waived and picked up by the Rams.  Burleson is recovering from a broken leg and should be ready for OTA’s.  Broyles is rehabbing a torn ACL and probably won’t be ready until week one at the earliest.  Durham did little with the golden opportunity given him when he was essentially the #2 wideout.  Neither Thomas nor Robiskie took advantage of the situation and will both probably be released.  Devin Thomas decided to come back and play after retiring for a year, I don’t think he’ll get off the practice squad.  Troy Burrell, Dominique Curry, Chastin West, Kassim Osgood, Patrick Edwards, Lance Long and Terrence Austin are all currently on the roster.  Several will be released and Osgood is a free agent.  Of the bunch I think Edwards having the best shot at making some noise in training camp and pre season.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Calvin Johnson: 27%

Nate Burleson: 16%

Ryan Broyles: 7%

Kris Durham: 2%

Patrick Edwards: 1%

 

 

Green Bay Packers

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Randall Cobb: 23%

James Jones: 18%

Jordy Nelson: 14%

Greg Jennings: 10%

Donald Driver: 2%

Jarrett Boykin: 1%

 

Jermichael Finley(TE): 17%

Alex Green(RB): 5%

John Kuhn(FB): 4%

 

Cobb may not have met the wild expectations of him prior to the season but he looked very good and Green Bay made an obvious effort to get the ball into his hands as much as possible.  Look for more of the same in 2013.  Jones’ set career highs in receptions and yardage and has solidified his place in the lineup.  Nelson took a significant step back from his breakout 2012 season as he struggled with injuries.  Look for a decent bounce back year for him.  Jennings is anxious to check out free agency, and while he won’t get anywhere near the $14 million he thinks he’s worth, he will find a nice payday elsewhere.  Driver announced his retirement.  Boykin’s role was very limited in his first season but depending on who else the team brings in to fill the roster Boykin should be able to win at least the #5 receiver spot.  Jeremy Ross is only depth at this point.  Look for the Packers to add a middling receiver via free agency for more depth.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Randall Cobb: 23%

Jordy Nelson: 21%

James Jones: 14%

Jarret Boykin: 7%

New Guy: 3%

 

 

Minnesota Vikings

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Percy Harvin: 22%

Michael Jenkins: 14%

Jerome Simpson: 9%

Jarius Wright: 8%

Devin Aromashodu: 4%

Stephen Burton: 2%

 

Kyle Rudolph(TE): 19%

Adrian Peterson(RB): 14%

Toby Gerhart(RB): 7%

 

Harvin’s future with the Vikings is pretty murky at the moment.  He may or may not hold out, he may or may not get traded, and he may or may not be happy and committed to the team if he does stay and play.  If he really is unhappy because he’s not getting the ball enough then the Vikings may as well get rid of him.  There’s no way their game plan won’t start and end with AP again in 2013.  The problem for Minnesota is they lack much else in the way of receivers.  Jenkins was due a big bonus so he was released.  Simpson is a free agent but the word is the Vikes want him back.  He should be back at a reasonable price after the disappointing season he had.  Look for him to bounce back a bit.  Wright looked good to me in limited action.  I expect his role to increase in 2013 but probably not significantly.  Aromashodu is another free agent but I can’t see him back.  Burton did next to nothing but is only 23 so he will probably be given a chance in training camp to show he can become an NFL caliber receiver.  Greg Childs is still being given at least a snowball’s chance of ever playing again, I don’t see it happening in 2013.  Chris Summers is another youngster who will get a shot in camp to make the team, but I wouldn’t count on it.  Look for the Vikes to draft a receiver early in the draft, and possibly sign a decent free agent.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

New Guy(Draft)  12%

New Guy(FA)  11%

Jarius Wright: 10%

Jerome Simpson: 8%

 

New Orleans Saints

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Marques Colston: 21%

Lance Moore: 16%

Devery Henderson: 6%

Joe Morgan: 3%

Greg Camarillo: 1%

Courtney Roby: 0%

 

Jimmy Graham: 21%

Darren Sproles: 19%

Pierre Thomas: 10%

 

Colston had another good year and is the undisputed lead dog for the Saints going forward.  Moore was very successful, he may come back to earth a bit in 2013 but should still be a solid #2 receiver.  Henderson was a big disappointment, he’s a free agent and I can’t see him being re-signed.  Morgan plays the same style as Henderson, he looked OK in a limited capacity so he will take over the deep threat role going forward.  Camarillo was released mid season.  Roby is another free agent who won’t be back.  Saalim Hakim is a long term project, don’t expect much in 2013.  Nick Toon missed his entire rookie year due to foot problems.  As far as I have been able to find out he should be good to go in 2013.  Chris Givens was waived/injured and should be back for depth.  Jarred Fayson, Preston Parker and Andy Tanner are more depth options that shouldn’t be a factor in the coming season.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Marques Colston: 23%

Lance Moore: 14%

Joe Morgan: 8%

Nick Toon: 2%

Chris Givens: 1%

 

 

New York Giants

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Victor Cruz: 27%

Hakeem Nicks: 17%

Domenik Hixon: 12%

Rueben Randle: 6%

Ramses Barden: 4%

Jerrel Jernigan: 1%

 

Martellus Bennett(TE): 17%

Ahmad Bradshaw(RB): 7%

 

Nicks battled injury most of the year, I expect a strong bounce-back season.  Cruz is an RFA and so far contract talks sound a little contentious.  He’s too big a talent to not re-sign him so look for him to be back.  Hixon is a UFA and with big bucks going to Cruz I don’t see Hixon being brought back.  Randle looked great in limited action and will step into the #3 role.  Barden is another UFA who should be able to be brought back cheaply but word is he’ll look elsewhere first.  I think he ends up back in New York.  Jernigan is also affordable and will get a chance in camp to move up the depth chart.  Brandon Collins, Kris Adams and Kevin Hardy round out the current receiving corps.  Of the three I’d say Collins has the best chance of making it onto the roster but it’s a longshot unless Barden isn’t re-signed.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Hakeem Nicks: 24%

Victor Cruz: 22%

Reuben Randle: 14%

Ramses Barden: 6%

Jerrel Jernigan: 4%

 

 

Philadelphia Eagles

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Jeremy Maclin: 19%

Jason Avant: 15%

DeSean Jackson: 13%

Riley Cooper: 6%

Damaris Johnson: 5%

 

Brent Celek(TE): 16%

LeSean McCoy(RB) : 15%

Bryce Brown(RB) : 4%

 

Maclin is a free agent after 2013 so he should be motivated to finally show he wasn’t a first round mistake.  Avant should see more targets under new coach Chip Kelly but I’m not sure he will be able to take advantage.  Jackson should also see his touches increase and I expect that will translate into a big season.  Most of Cooper’s playing time came when Jackson was out, assuming the other receivers stay healthy his playing time will go down.  Johnson will likely be limited to special teams in 2013.  Marvin McNutt has the best chance of cracking the top five in 2013, if not him then Greg Salas who was picked up off waivers from the Pats may be the guy.  Ronald Johnson, BJ Cunningham, DeMarco Sampson and Nick Miller offer little upside and are just depth.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

DeSean Jackson: 21%

Jeremy Maclin: 17%

Jason Avant: 13%

Marvin McNutt: 6%

Riley Cooper: 2%

 

 

St. Louis Rams

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Danny Amendola: 20%

Brandon Gibson: 16%

Chris Givens: 13%

Austin Pettis: 10%

Steve Smith: 4%

Brian Quick: 3%

 

Amendola was on pace for close to 1,000 yards before his injury.  He’s a free agent and the two sides are discussing contract.  Given the state of the Rams receiving corps I don’t think they can let him go.  Gibson is also a free agent but I can’t imagine him looking for big dollars given he’s never shown anywhere near top level skills in the NFL.  I think he’ll be back.  Givens looks like he’s going to be a good one, I expect he’ll be second on the depth chart from day one this year.  Pettis’ numbers his first two seasons leave a lot to be desired but he’ll have another season to show he belongs.  Smith is yet another free agent who can probably be re-signed cheap but at this point it’s probably 50/50 whether he’s brought back.  Quick struggled his rookie year but still has nice upside.  Nick Johnson and Raymond Radway are the only other receivers on the roster, neither is any more than roster filler at this point.  But given the total lack of bodies maybe Johnson gets a realistic shot in camp.  The Rams will assuredly draft a WR this year but they have plenty of holes to fill and I don’t see a receiver being their top priority.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Chris Givens: 16%

Brandon Gibson: 11%

New Guy (Draft) 9%

Austin Pettis: 7%

Brian Quick: 7%

 

 

San Francisco 49ers

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Michael Crabtree: 31%

Mario Manningham: 15%

Randy Moss: 10%

Kyle Williams: 5%

Ted Ginn Jr: 1%

 

Vernon Davis(TE): 15%

Frank Gore(RB): 10%

Delanie Walker(TE): 8%

Bruce Miller(FB): 4%

 

Crabtree finally fulfilled his potential and looks to be a premier WR going forward.  Manningham is recovering from nasty knee surgery and won’t be ready for the start of the season.  Word is he’ll be released but I don’t think so, expect him to be back.  Moss is a free agent and while he was a good soldier throughout the season it was inevitable he would complain about his lack of targets.  He won’t be back.  Williams is also recovering from knee surgery but he should be ready for camp.  Ginn is a free agent and has shown nothing as a pass catcher, I don’t think he’ll be back but if the Niners do cut Manningham they may want Ginn back for depth.  Rookie A.J. Jenkins did little in 2012 but he should progress into a regular role if he can master the playbook.  Chad Hall and Ricardo Lockette round out the roster, neither are more than depth options.  The Niners look to have a boatload of draft picks when the compensatory picks are handed out so at least one receiver will be selected.  They also are comfortable against the cap so I expect them to sign a decent wideout.  Update:  The Niners have traded for Anquan Boldin, who should slot in as their #2 option in 2013.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Michael Crabtree: 30%

Anquan Boldin: 15%

Manningham: 8%

A.J. Jenkins: 5%

Kyle Williams: 3%

 

 

Seattle Seahawks

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Sidney Rice: 20%

Golden Tate: 18%

Doug Baldwin: 11%

Braylon Edwards: 3%

Ben Obomanu: 2%

Charly Martin: 2%

Jermaine Kearse: 1%

 

Zach Miller(TE): 15%

Marshawn Lynch(RB): 9%

Robert Turbin(RB): 7%

Anthony McCoy(TE): 7%

Michael Robinson(FB): 5%

 

Rice stayed healthy in 2012 and had a pretty good year considering the Seahawks don’t throw much.  Look for another hopefully healthy productive season in 2013.  Tate continues to improve and should have a slightly expanded role going forward.  Baldwin did the opposite last season but I think we can chalk that up to a ‘sophomore slump’ and he should bounce back.  Edwards was waived in early December and picked up by the Jets.  Obomanu finished the season on IR and will probably be released.  Martin is an affordable depth player and will remain with Seattle.  Kearse saw limited action as a rookie and will likely be on the practice squad in 2013.  Deon Butler is an RFA and might be back for depth.  Stephen Williams, Phil Bates and Bryan Walters round out the squad.  None are more than depth.  Update:  Big one:  Percy Harvin comes over from the Vikings.  Seattle's offense just changed dramatically.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Percy Harvin: 23%

Sidney Rice: 17%

Golden Tate: 12%

Doug Baldwin: 9%

Charly Martin: 2%

Deon Butler: 1%

 

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Vincent Jackson: 23%

Mike Williams: 21%

Tiquan Underwood: 9%

Arrelious Benn: 1%

 

Doug Martin(RB): 16%

Dallas Clark(TE): 15%

DJ Ware(RB): 5%

Luke Stocker(TE): 5%

Erik Lorig(FB): 4%

 

Jackson signed the big dollar free agent contract and then went out and delivered.  He’ll be the #1 receiver going forward obviously.  Williams had a good season as well, coming within a hair of 1,000 yards.  There’s no reason not to expect continued success as long as he has Jackson to take away coverage.  Underwood had his best season ever which isn’t saying much.  His salary is reasonable so he should remain on the roster if for no other reason than a real shortage of receiving options.  Benn’s somewhat promising career progression was derailed by injuries in 2012, assuming he gets healthy in the off season he should slide into the #3 spot.  Chris Owusu went undrafted due to injuries but has promise, look for him to earn a spot in the pre season.  David Douglas is around strictly for depth.  Sammy Stroughter and Roscoe Parrish are UFA’s and neither one is likely to be brought back.  Look for Tampa to draft a receiver in the mid to late rounds.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Vincent Jackson: 23%

Mike Williams: 22%

Arrelious Benn: 10%

Tiquan Underwood: 1%

Chris Owusu: 1%

 

 

Washington Redskins

 

2012 Receivers with percentage of team receptions

Josh Morgan: 18%

Pierre Garcon: 16%

Santana Moss: 15%

Leonard Hankerson: 14%

Aldrick Robinson: 4%

Brandon Banks: 3%

Dezmon Briscoe: 1%

 

Fred Davis(TE): 9%

Logan Paulsen(TE): 9%

Evan Royster(RB): 6%

Alfred Morris(RB): 4%

 

Morgan led the receivers in catches by necessity given the injury to Garcon limited him to ten games.  Overall Morgan’s numbers weren’t very impressive, his contract is significant and due to surgery to both hands he probably won’t be ready until some time in training camp.  Not real sure why I’m not reading anywhere that the Redskins will cut him but I assume that’s exactly what will happen.  Garcon should be healthy in time for the 2013 season and will take his rightful place at the top of the food chain.  Moss is another one with a significant cap hit that is clearly higher than his value.  Unless he agrees to restructure his deal expect him to be cut also.  Hankerson has been underwhelming so far in his career and I don’t expect that to change.  But Washington will keep him and his affordable contract around for another season in the hopes that he shows some upside.  Robinson didn’t show much his first season but I really like his upside.  Watch for him to impress in pre season and earn a regular spot.  Banks is an RFA and may be brought back for depth, we’ll see.  Briscoe is a future prospect who needs more time to develop but may get a chance as the #5 receiver.  Darius Hanks is just another depth body.

 

2013 Wide Receiver forecast:

Pierre Garcon: 26%

Aldrick Robinson: 14%

Santana Moss: 11%

Leonard Hankerson: 8%

Dezmon Briscoe: 5%