6 Low-Priced Wide Receiver and Tight End Values for 2023 Fantasy Drafts

by Casey Gruarin · Draft Strategy

Hunting for Value

It’s Fantasy Draft Season and fantasy gamers are looking for fantasy football values in their drafts – at all positions. Year over year, some of the greatest values come at the wide receiver and tight end positions. Below, we lay out the case for six of the best values of 2023.

Marquise Brown, Arizona Cardinals

Marquise Brown is currently getting drafted on average in the middle of the sixth round in FFPC drafts (76.4 ADP).  Brown is being undervalued because the Arizona Cardinals are projected to be in the Caleb Williams sweepstakes and to be one of the league’s worst offenses. If Brown makes it to the late sixth or even seventh round of your draft, he’s the perfect option for a third wide receiver or second flex. He has a safe floor but also possesses weekly upside if he can break a long touchdown with his elite 4.32 40 Yard Dash speed. He’s also still in his Super Prime at 26 years old.

From Weeks 1 to 6 in 2022, Marquise Brown was the WR5 in PPR leagues, having all the targets to himself without DeAndre Hopkins. Three of those games, he had 20-plus point outings. Brown struggled at the end of the season while coming off of a foot fracture. It was impressive he even came back. Colt McCoy could only support one viable wide receiver and it ended up being Hopkins. Hollywood should benefit heavily from what Matt Kelley has coined: “the Tom Savage Corollary.” Whoever plays QB until Murray gets back will lock onto Brown in negative game scripts. Rookie Clayton Tune did have a 4,000 yard, 40 TD season last year in college. Brown had a 95.6-percent (No. 12) Route Participation Rate and 14.4 (No. 15) Expected Fantasy Points per Game in 2022. He will smash this season as long as he’s on the field.

Romeo Doubs, Green Bay Packers

Not to overreact to preseason stats, but Romeo Doubs has over 70 yards and a touchdown in two games so far with Jordan Love. His FFPC ADP is 126.4, which is past the 10th round. Doubs is a locked-in starter for the Green Bay Packers this season. His ADP is way too late for a starting receiver. It’s unknown how the targets will play out with Love. That makes Doubs the perfect late round flier pick. When the target share is yet to shake out, buying a late-round option is an excellent speculative decision. If Doubs doesn’t work out, he can just be dropped to waivers.

Romeo Doubs Advanced Stats & Metrics Profile

Doubs has the size to succeed outside, however, at 6-2 and 200-pounds. His 94.8 (55th-percentile) Height-Adjusted Speed Score is above average. His collegiate production metrics are outstanding as well. Doubs’s 32.9-percent (64th-percentile) College Dominator Rating, 24.6-percent (73rd-percentile) College Target Share, and 19.4 (80th-percentile) Breakout Age are all impressive predictive metrics. It should be noted that he shared a field with Cole Turner in college, who could be the starting tight end for the Washington Commanders this season. His lack of late-season production in 2022 can be attributed to a high ankle sprain he suffered in Week 9. If Love can produce, Doubs has a good chance to outperform his round 10 ADP.

Alec Pierce, Indianapolis Colts

Alec Pierce is almost free in drafts. You can get a locked in starter in some of the last rounds of your draft, which is incredible value. Just as with Doubs, how new QB Anthony Richardson will distribute targets is unknown. It’s at least worth taking a chance in the last three rounds of your draft on a sophomore player with a new QB. Pierce endured some of the most atrocious QB play possible last season and still had some decent weeks of production. His Target Accuracy Rating was No. 75 amongst qualified players.

Alec Pierce Advanced Stats & Metrics Profile

Pierce is a downfield weapon who boasts elite athleticism. He is 90th-perentile or better in all PlayerProfiler Workout Metrics besides Agility Score. And Richardson, who possesses elite arm talent, will be throwing him the ball. It’s no guarantee Michael Pittman will be Richardson’s favorite target. If Shane Steichen makes the Colts’ offense anything like the Eagles’, he will consolidate the targets heavily to his best receivers. Select Pierce late on the hopes he can establish a connection with the rookie QB.

Hunter Renfrow, Las Vegas Raiders

Upside wins championships in fantasy drafts. Hunter Renfrow‘s profile does not scream “league-winning” upside. The difference with Renfrow is that he’s done it before and he’s hardly getting drafted in most leagues. In 2021, he was the WR10 in PPR leagues.

Renfrow’s 2022 was marred by injuries. A concussion, hip strain, and oblique strain held him to only ten games.  His Week 17 game refreshed fantasy gamers in the fantasy playoffs when he posted a 7-63-1 line. Jimmy Garoppolo, Josh McDaniel, and Renfrow will combine for a perfect storm in 2023. They will be bringing back old New England Patriots vibes, with the slot receiver dominating the offense. Yes, Davante Adams is still there along with Jakobi Meyers; however, Jimmy G should keep the ball close to the line of scrimmage, which favors Renfrow’s game.

Hayden Hurst, Carolina Panthers

Looking for a late round tight end who’s getting drafted too late? Hayden Hurst is one who will heavily outperform his ADP this season. The equation is simple. DJ Chark is battling a hamstring injury already. Adam Thielen is 33 years old with hamstring history. Terrace Marshall is dealing with a back issue. Lastly, Miles Sanders has a groin injury. As the target competition falters, targets will have to funnel towards Hayden Hurst. He can be the ultimate safety blanket for Bryce Young this season.

Jonathan Mingo could also be viewed as a value in drafts at this point as well. Hurst is a more proven asset that got a deal for $21 million over the next three seasons. He’s been around the league helping young QBs grow quietly behind the scenes. His ADP is currently over 200 in the FFPC but it will keep rising fast, up 35 slots now. With fragile competition around him, Hurst will push for the team lead in targets by the end of the season.

Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams

Tyler Higbee‘sADP does not make sense based on the projected target volume in 2023. He’s currently going around pick 120 in FFPC drafts, which is a huge inefficiency for a player who could finish first or second on his team in targets. Cooper Kupp is recovering from a hamstring injury, Van Jefferson has yet to breakout, and Tutu Atwell still needs to prove health and production. Higbee is the most likely to finish behind Kupp in targets for the Rams this season.

Tyler Higbee could be the most reliable option in fantasy football this season outside of Travis Kelce and Darren Waller. He played all 17 games last year, meaning he can be fired up in lineups every week. He finished TE6 in PPR leagues and top-10 in points per game as well. Higbee had a 30-point fantasy outing with Baker Mayfield at the end of last season and produced average numbers, even on a dreadful offense. The 2023 Rams’ defense projects to struggle, leading to more positive game scripts. Higbee is a smash anywhere from round eight to 11 and will finish as a top-10 tight end once again, possibly  higher.

Own Your Draft

Drafts are won by finding values all over the board. Drafting these late-round-value pass-catchers allows fantasy gamers to spend up at premium positions such as running back and quarterback. Each of these pass-catchers is being drafted round six or later and has tremendous upside if things fall right. They have demonstrated the ability to play meaningful roles in their offenses and drafters are overlooking them. Time to capitalize!