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Top-5 NFL Rookie WRs for Fantasy

Here is a look at the top five wide receivers for fantasy purposes. This writing is formatted for Superflex and dynasty leagues. The wide receivers lack the super stud as in previous seasons, but it’s a deep class. All five on this list have a chance to start for their future teams. A lot will depend on the landing spot of the individual player.

Jaxon Smith-Njigba- Ohio State

Jaxon Smith-Njigba attended Rockwall High School in Rockwall, Texas. Smith-Njigba won several awards and was listed as a 5-star athlete. He was heavily recruited and received offers from Notre Dame, Cal, and Kansas, among many others. Smith-Njigba chose Ohio State. He is a strong salesman on his routes and wins with his excellent release, body control, agility, quickness, footwork, and route running. Smith-Njigba uses sharp cuts and will hand fight throughout the route. He maintains his stem and can sink his hips to change direction. However, he lacks top-end speed and, at times, round his routes. But, After the catch, he is decisive and a threat to all levels of the field.

Zay Flowers- Boston College

Zay Flowers attended NSU University High School in Davie, Florida. He is a 3-star recruit who received offers from Cincinnati, Appalachian State, Nebraska, and Pitt. However, he chose Boston College. Flowers can provide inside and outside versatility (X, Y, Z). He tracks the ball well while it’s in the air. Draft Network states he is competitive at the catch point and has reeled in 50% of contested catches. He can separate and be a significant play threat downfield. However, Flowers’ play strength and size are not ideal. He struggles to break tackles and has a small catch radius. Flowers had too many drops (9) in 2022. He must be more of a salesman with his routes as he gives away his intentions. But, he is the type that is tough to corral and avoids contact through first-level defenders. Flowers is unlikely to be caught from behind.

Jordan Addison- USC

Jordan Addison attended Tuscarora High School in Frederick, Maryland. Addison played multiple positions, including wide receiver, quarterback, and defensive back, and also as a 4-star athlete. Addison has elite athletic ability, deep speed, sharp cuts, and good hands. He drops his hips to change direction and links speed, balance, quickness, and vision to leave defenders in the dust. However, Addison has too many concentration drops and will body catch the ball to secure deep throws, not his hands. His slight frame may get him pushed around by press coverage. Addison does have the foot quickness and toughness to be utilized in the slot and can line up anywhere on the field. Addison has strong hands and brings in passes with a fluid motion without breaking stride. He could be the best route runner in this class.

Quentin Johnston- TCU

Quentin Johnston attended Temple High School in Temple, Texas. As a 4-star recruit, Johnston received offers from Texas, Notre Dame, Baylor, and Oklahoma. He has an explosive first step to eat up the defender’s cushion. On breaking routes, Johnston sinks his hips to create separation. He understands zone coverages and will find the hole in them. However, he needs to be better at press-man as he will let the defender into his chest, slowing him down. He has a limited route tree and needs to do a better job at catching the ball. Johnston appears to be a prototypical X-receiver and has proven successful against man and zone schemes. He becomes difficult to tackle once the ball is in his hands and will power through arm tackles. Johnston has top-end speed.

Jalin Hyatt- Tennessee

Jalin Hyatt attended Dutch Fork High School in Imo, South Carolina. Hyatt was listed as a 4-star athlete and received offers from Michigan, Kentucky, Nebraska, and Penn State. However, he chose Tennessee. His quick feet set up his routes, allowing him to win against press coverages. Also, Hyatt has long strides and explosiveness to eat up the defender’s cushion. Unfortunately, He simply ran vertical routes from the slot at Tennessee, so his route tree is minimal. Hyatt lacks creativity after the catch and is a linear player with the ball in his hands. However, Hyatt is nimble and explosive, has the speed necessary to win most foot races, and will get behind defenders. He stacks defenders and could be the fastest receiver in this class. Hyatt tracks the ball well and has the arm length to have a wide catch radius.  Breaking down the top-five list by tiers. Smith-Njigba is in Tier 1, while Zay Flowers and Jordan Addison are in Tier 2. Johnston is in Tier 3, and Hyatt belongs to Tier 4.

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