Depending on your fantasy football league’s scoring setup, some of the top wide receivers could be worth selecting in the first round of your draft. Players such as Dez Bryant, Antonio Brown, Demaryius Thomas and Calvin Johnson are four of the most trustworthy players in fantasy football based on their abilities to consistently rack up points.
Here are the top 20 receivers on fantasy draft boards in 2015.
1. Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys (Bye Week: 6)
2014 stats: 88 receptions, 1,320 yards, 16 TDs
Bryant has a new contract, plenty of motivation after how last season’s playoff run ended and arguably is the most talented receiver in the NFL. Oh, and he has an elite fantasy quarterback in Tony Romo throwing him the ball. Bryant led all NFL receivers with 16 touchdown catches last season, and it wouldn’t be surprising if he reached that mark again in 2015.
2. Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers (Bye Week: 11)
2014 stats: 129 receptions, 1,629 yards, 13 TDs
Brown led the league in receiving yards last season, and his 106.1 yards-per-game average ranked third. The Steelers have one of the most balanced offenses in the league, but fantasy owners can rely on Brown to be targeted early and often each week.
3. Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos (Bye Week: 7)
2014 stats: 111 receptions, 1,619 yards, 11 TDs
Peyton Manning’s top receiver should be taken in Round 1 of mostÂ fantasy leagues, regardless of the scoring format. Thomas ranked second in receiving yards last season and is a lock for 10-plus touchdowns.
4. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons (Bye Week: 10)
2014 stats: 104 receptions, 1,593 yards, 6 TDs
Jones played in 15 games last season after injuries limited him to just five in 2013. He bounced back with career highs in receptions, targets and receiving yards. Jones should remain a top-five receiver as long as he’s healthy.
5. Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants (Bye Week: 11)
2014 stats: 91 receptions, 1,305 yards, 12 TDs
Beckham Jr. became a superstar last season after his extraordinary one-handed catch against the Dallas Cowboys. The rookie wideout finished 10th in receiving yards and led the league with a 108.8 yards-per-game average. Victor Cruz’s return from injury could lessen Beckham’s targets, but he’s still a top-10 receiver.
6. Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (Bye Week: 9)
2014 stats: 71 receptions, 1,077 yards, 8 TDs
Injures have caused Johnson to miss five games over the last two seasons, including three in 2014. If healthy, Johnson still is an elite receiver who will be consistently targeted in the red zone.
7. A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (Bye Week: 7)
2014 stats: 69 receptions, 1,041 yards, 6 TDs
Green missed three games last season and started a bit slowly — it took him until Week 12 to tally more than seven receptions in a game. That said, Green still is one of the most talented receivers in the league and worth selecting inÂ Round 2 or Round 3Â ofÂ your draft.
8. Randall Cobb, Green Bay Packers (Bye Week: 7)
2014 stats: 91 receptions, 1,287 yards, 12 TDs
Jordy Nelson’s season-ending injury significantly boosts Cobb’s value as Aaron Rodgers’ new most trusted target. He’s a near-lock for 90-plus receptions, which makes him quite valuable in PPR leagues.
9. Alshon Jeffery, Chicago Bears (Bye Week: 7)
2014 stats: 85 receptions, 1,133 yards, 10 TDs
Jeffery set a career high in touchdowns last season and should hit double digits again in 2015 with veteran receiver Brandon Marshall no longer in the Bears’ offense to steal targets.
10. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Bye Week: 6)
2014 stats: 68 receptions, 1,051 yards, 12 TDs
Evans had a phenomenal rookie season and tied for the league lead in touchdown catches among first-year receivers. The 6-foot-5, 231-pounder quickly should become the top target of No. 1 pick Jameis Winston.
11. Brandin Cooks, New Orleans Saints (Bye Week: 11)
2014 stats: 53 receptions, 550 yards, 3 TDs
Cooks played in 10 games as a rookie last season and became one of Drew Brees’ top targets. He’s a prime candidate for a breakout 2015 campaignÂ and should be targeted in all keeper/dynasty leagues.
12. Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos (Bye Week: 7)
2014 stats: 101 receptions, 1,404 yards, 9 TDs
Sanders enjoyed a very successful first season with the Broncos as Peyton Manning’s slot receiver. Sanders also shattered his previous career highs in receptions, yards and touchdowns. Manning’s weakening arm strength has decreased his accuracy on deep passes, which should allow Sanders to receive 140-plus targets again next season.
13. T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts (Bye Week: 10)
2014 stats: 82 receptions, 1,345 yards, 7 TDs
Andrew Luck’s top receiver finished sixth in the league in receiving yards, including six 100-yard games and five touchdowns in the last five games. Hilton is a reliable WR2 entering the 2015 season.
14. Julian Edelman, New England Patriots (Bye Week: 4)
2014 stats: 92 receptions, 972 yards, 4 TDs
Tom Brady’s most trusted receiver racks up a ton of catches and often is targeted on third downs and in the red zone. Edelman probably won’t put up earth-shattering numbers, but he’s as reliable as WR2s come and a must-own in PPR leagues.
15. Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles (Bye Week: 8)
2014 stats: 67 receptions, 872 yards, 8 TDs
Matthews was another one of last season’s productive rookie wideouts. He’s also capable of making game-breakingÂ plays, evidenced by his 16 catches of 20-plus yards and 350 yards after contact.
16. Vincent Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Bye Week: 6)
2014 stats: 70 receptions, 1,002 yards, 2 TDs
Jackson has hit the 1,000-yard receiving mark in four consecutive seasons, but he had just two touchdown catches in 2014. A lot of that probably was a result of rookie wideout Mike Evans making a huge impact in the Bucs’ passing game, but Jackson still is a quality WR2 in most fantasy leagues.
17. DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans (Bye Week: 9)
2014 stats: 76 receptions, 1,210 yards, 6 TDs
Hopkins should be a target in keeper leagues as one of the rising stars among NFL receivers. He overtook Andre Johnson as the Texans’ No. 1 wideout last season and should keep improving in his third year as a pro.
18. Amari Cooper, Oakland Raiders (Bye Week: 6)
2014 stats: Rookie
Oakland usually prevents talented rookies from reaching their full potential, but Cooper is a different player. He was the best receiver in college football last season, an excellent route runner, has great speed and makes clutch catches all over the field. Combine those skills with a competent quarterback in David Carr, and you have the recipe for a solid rookie season from Cooper.
19. Keenan Allen, San Diego ChargersÂ (Bye Week: 10)
2014 stats: 77 receptions, 783 yards, 4 TDs
Allen had a bit of a sophomore slump last season after a stellar rookie campaign in 2013. The talent still is there, though, and there’s nothing preventing the 23-year-old from having a big bounce-back season. He could be a great value add in the middle rounds.
20. Sammy Watkins, Buffalo Bills (Bye Week: 8)
2014 stats: 65 receptions, 982 yards, 6 TDs
Watkins has the potential to be a fantasy star and racked up 982 yards last season with Kyle Orton and E.J. Manuel as his quarterbacks. Unfortunately, Buffalo’sÂ offense still revolves around the run, and the addition of LeSean McCoy prevents Watkins from landing any higher on this list.
Thumbnail photo viaÂ Kevin Jairaj/USA TODAY Sports Images