There isn’t much certainty from year to year at the wide receiver position. But Texas receiver Andre Johnson is one player you can definitely count on.
He has remained a consistent and durable threat throughout his NFL career – and his partnership with QB Matt Schaub promises big dividends again this season. He tops our latest WR rankings:
1) Andre Johnson, Texans: He averaged 1,572 yards receiving over the past two seasons, then got a nice contractual reward.
2) Randy Moss, Patriots: He needs a big campaign to earn one more big contract. He has been spectacular in the New England camp.
3) Brandon Marshall, Dolphins: He is making bold statistical projections, but can QB Chad Henne keep him fed?
4) Reggie Wayne, Colts: He’s automatic: Six straight 1,000-yard seasons.
5) Miles Austin, Cowboys: The arrival of Dez Bryant will eliminate double teams.
6) Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals: The retirement of QB Kurt Warner will hurt. Is Matt Leinart ready? Apparently not, since Derek Anderson climbed past him on the depth chart. Fitzgerald's sprained knee is another concern. He lost valuable work time in the Warner-less camp.
7) Calvin Johnson, Lions: Matthew Stafford’s maturation, arrival of WR Nate Burleson and RB Jahvid Best create more dynamic offense.
8) DeSean Jackson, Eagles: He is confident that he and QB Kevin Kolb will post numbers. He has backed up his big talk with a strong preseason.
9) Roddy White, Falcons: Resurgence of RB Michael Turner should keep things loose for him. He caught six or more passes in eight of the final 11 games. He averaged 85 catches, 1,246 yards and eight TDs during the last three seasons.
10) Greg Jennings, Packers: This big-play threat had six catches of 40 yards or more last season. There is no reason to doubt QB Aaron Rodgers or this offense.
11) Marques Colston, Saints: He has averaged eight TD catches the last three seasons.
12) Chad Ochocinco, Bengals: Upgraded WR corps should help spring him. He campaigned for Terrell Owens and got him.
13) Steve Smith, Panthers: Re-broke his arm during off-season flag football game, but he says he will be ready. Is QB Matt Moore good enough to exploit him?
14) Anquan Boldin, Ravens: Will Baltimore open up its offense with upgraded WRs? QB Joe Flacco should be up to the challenge.
15) Wes Welker, Patriots: Amazing progress from major knee surgery has Patriots excited.
16) Mike Sims-Walker, Jaguars: No. 1 target for improving Jacksonville offense. Missed time in training camp due to a shoulder injury.
17) Steve Smith, Giants: He became a steady PPR forces during ’09 breakout. But a groin muscle strain slowed him during the preseason.
18) Hakeem Nicks, Giants: If he can stay healthy, he will build on strong rookie season. He dodged a bullet when his training camp knee injury turned out to be minor. Too bad this team doesn't throw more.
19) Michael Crabtree, 49ers: Full offseason of NFL work positions him for breakout.
20) Donald Driver, Packers: Off-season repairs having him feeling like new.
21) Pierre Garcon, Colts: Was AFC title game indicator of big things to come?
22) Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs: Can he pull his head out and play up to his vast potential? Improved KC passing game under Charlie Weis should help.
23) Dez Bryant, Cowboys: Should displace WR Roy Williams as QB Tony Romo’s No. 2 target. High ankle sprain during preseason was a setback.
24) Percy Harvin, Vikings: Chronic headaches could cut into production. That he collapsed during a training camp session is an ominous sign. But Sidney Rice's injury boosts his importance.
25) Steve Breaston, Cardinals: Moves into a bigger role with Boldin gone. But the QB situation there is scary.
26) Jeremy Maclin, Eagles: Has explosive talent, but delivered just 100-yard receiving game as rookie. He suffered minor knee and shoulder injuries during the preseason.
27) Mike Wallace, Steelers: Gained 19.4 yards per catch as a rookie. But QB Ben Roethlisberger’s suspension hampers Pittsburgh offense.
28) Lee Evans, Bills: Buffalo’s QB quandary diminishes his value.
29) Devin Aromashodu, Bears: Can he build on big finish and become top Chicago target?
30) Braylon Edwards, Jets: This is the make-or-break season of his career. Will he quit dropping passes?
31) Hines Ward, Steelers: Advancing age, Roethlisberger’s suspension should erode his statistics.
32) Malcolm Floyd, Chargers: Jackson’s contract tiff could make this WR a primary Philip Rivers target.
33) Robert Meachem, Saints: His nine TD catches gave him surprising value in N.O.’s diverse offense. He is on the comeback from toe surgery.
34) Kenny Britt, Titans: He had a terrible offseason. Will that carry over?
35) Vincent Jackson, Chargers: NFL suspension will cost him at least three games; contract dispute could cost him more, unless he’s traded. Seattle is kicking his tires currently.
36) T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Seahawks: Pete Carroll will crank up Seattle’s passing game.
37) Jerricho Cotchery, Jets: Reliable possession WR will benefit from QB Mark Sanchez’s growth. But increased WR depth could cut into his usage.
38) Early Doucet, Cardinals: With Boldin gone, he seems poised for a third-year breakout.
39) Derrick Mason, Ravens: Boldin’s arrival creates dynamic passing game, gives this old-timer a boost.
40) Terrell Owens, Bengals: He doesn't seem capable of posting big numbers anymore, but he will be another red zone option for QB Carson Palmer.
41) Johnny Knox, Bears: New Air Martz offensive scheme keeps all the WRs busy. He was especially impressive early on.
42) Devery Henderson, Saints: Caught a career-high 51 passes last year. But wealth of good targets makes N.O. WRs hard to project.
43) Bernard Berrian, Vikings: Another benefactor of Favre’s return. He was primary preseason target with both Rice and Percy Harvin sidelined.
44) Golden Tate, Seahawks: Rookie could play big role in Pete Carroll’s passing game. But he has struggled to grasp the Seattle offense thus far.
45) Josh Morgan, 49ers: Is he poised for a third-year breakout? Has serious big-play potential.
46) Anthony Gonzalez, Colts: Should return to his rightful role in the Indy offense.
47) Dexter McCluster, Chiefs: Will play multiple positions. Should become valuable flex player.
48) Santana Moss, Redskins: QB Donovan McNabb should make him somewhat more valuable.
49) Austin Collie, Colts: Return of Gonzalez should diminish role. But he is having a fine camp.
50) Demaryius Thomas, Broncos: Marshall’s exit opens door for rookie’s emergence. But will his foot problems linger? So far they have.
51) Brian Hartline, Dolphins: He has earned the job across from Marshall in this energized offense. As a rookie, he averaged 16.3 yards on 31 catches.
52) Santonio Holmes, Jets: Will miss the first four games while serving a NFL suspension.
53) Kevin Walter, Texans: Appears destined for a possession role in Houston offense.
54) Eddie Royal, Broncos: Can he make amends to fantasy GMs after horrendous ’09 season?
55) Chris Chambers, Chiefs: Caught 36 passes for 608 yards and four TDs in nine games in K.C. last season.
56) Jabar Gaffney, Broncos: He is reliable, but what can we expect from this offense?
57) Nate Burleson. Lions: He got big bucks in Motown to help elevate fledgling offense.
58) Devin Hester, Bears: Strangely quiet as a big-play WR last year. Will that change under Martz?
59) Jacoby Jones, Texans: His explosive speed could help him emerge as the No. 2 target next to Johnson. He had a career-best 27 catches last season while averaging 16.2 yards. He caught six TDs.
60) Mohamed Massaquoi, Browns: Good news: He’s the No. 1 receiver in Cleveland? Bad news: He’s the No. 1 receiver in Cleveland.
61) Mario Manningham, Giants: Could slide into No. 3 role in a so-so passing attack. He was hampered by a groin strain during the preseason.
62) Roy Williams, Cowboys: Dez Bryant will almost certainly knock him down to a No. 3 WR role.
63) Mike Williams, Buccaneers: This rookie keeps turning heads at training camp. He is already clicking with QB Josh Freeman.
64) Mike Thomas, Jaguars: Followed a 48-catch rookie season by moving from the slot into the WR-2 role.
65) Laurent Robinson, Rams: Best route-runner on a terrible team; could become QB Sam Bradford’s best friend.
66) Sammie Stroughter, Buccaneers: He is beating out Arrelious Benn for the chance to start opposite of Williams this season.
67) Louis Murphy, Raiders: Could emerge as No. 1 target in Oakland, by default.
68) Danny Amendola, Rams: Donnie Avery's demise moves him into a starting role.
69) Josh Cribbs, Browns: Return menace and potential flex option.
70) Mardy Gilyard, Rams: Potential slot WR and KR for a team begging for big plays.
71) Mike Williams, Seahawks: He could become the NFL's comeback player of the year. Pete Carroll has revived him.
72) Sidney Rice, Vikings: His hip injury will sideline him for half the season, all but eliminating his value. Worth grabbing in a keeper league, but that's it.
73) Earl Bennett, Bears: Coming off a 54-catch season, he is the fourth WR in the wide-open Air Martz offense.
74) Josh Reed, Chargers: Working in the slot in San Diego, he should gain value once Vincent Jackson is dealt.
75) Greg Camarillo, Vikings: Move to Minnesota's injury-depleted WR corps could make him busier.
76) Roscoe Parrish, Bills: The return specialist starred in the preseason and earned the slot receiving job.
77) Buster Davis, Chargers: The Jackson standoff forces San Diego to look for new targets.
78) Brandon LaFell, Panthers: He could emerge as the WR-2 in Carolina, for an admittedly weak passing game.
79) Joey Galloway, Redskins: His strong preseason is putting him in line for work.
80) Arrelious Benn, Buccaneers: Tampa Bay welcomes the addition of a big passing target.
81) Brandon Tate, Patriots: Making a splash in the return game during the preseason and he's also excelled receiving.
82) Javon Walker, Vikings: Rice's injury is giving Favre's buddy a real shot.
83) Victor Cruz, Giants: His splashy preseason could earn him a kick return role and the No. 4 receiving job.
84) Stephen Williams, Cardinals: Camp surprise pushing for the No. 4 role.
85) Devin Thomas, Redskins: He didn’t break out last season. What about this year? He is struggling to make the team.
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