The wide receiver has become the dominant position throughout fantasy football, as young players like Justin Jefferson, Ja’Marr Chase, and CeeDee Lamb (just to name a few) are lighting up the stats. Unfortunately for NFL teams looking to make a big splash at the location, they will find it difficult to do so between now and next season. The free agent market is a bit weak heading into the 2023 offseason. One of the more attractive options for the position could be JuJu Smith-Schuster, who signed a one-year contract with the Chiefs in 2022.
The veteran is still only 26 and has demonstrated an ability to be productive in the past. However, he hasn’t lived up to expectations from a fantasy perspective in Kansas City. posting a WR27 finish on 78 catches, 933 yards and three touchdowns. Regardless, his age and his skills, plus a weak market, will make JuJu attractive.
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Here are five teams that may need a wide receiver and would be attractive spots for Smith-Schuster to land next season. Let’s start with Dallas.
The Cowboys traded Amari Cooper last offseason, hoping Michael Gallup would go out as the No. 2 wideout. It didn’t happen. If Dallas really wants to help Dak Prescott and improve his offense in a division that has turned out to be one of the best in the NFL, grabbing another playmaking receiver to match CeeDee Lamb and Gallup is a must. Smith-Schuster would be a good option for Prescott in what would remain a explosive offensive offense, especially if they lose Dalton Schultz.
New England Patriots
The Patriots could lose Jakobi Meyers and Nelson Agholor as free agents, so they could seek free agency for wide field. Smith-Schuster, who was tied with New England last offseason, could be one of the top options in the passing game alongside DeVante Parker and Tyquan Thornton. There are some questions about Mac Jones and the quarterback position, but we’re looking at the teams that could offer Smith-Schuster the most targets. The Patriots are up to it.
It seems like the Ravens always need a wide receiver, right? And this isn’t the first time Smith-Schuster has been mentioned as a potential option. The jury is still out on Rashod Bateman as a pro and their best wideout of 2022, Demarcus Robinson, is a free agent. Smith-Schuster has known the AFC North since Pittsburgh and would be a top three option in the passing attack for Lamar Jackson.
Giants of New York
Last time the Giants added a big-name wide receiver, well, that didn’t work out too well. In fact, saying “Kenny Golladay” in the Big Apple is going to give you some dirty looks. Regardless, the G-Men have Sterling Shepard, Darius Slayton, Richie James, and Marcus Johnson all set to become free agents. Assuming the team keeps both Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley, Smith-Schuster could come in and become their most targeted wide receiver. It’s a nice landing place for the real and fantastic value of him.
Is there any team in the NFL more in need of a wide receiver than the Bears? Their “No. 1” wideout, Darnell Mooney, is coming off an ankle injury and really isn’t a true alpha receiver. N’Keal Harry and Byron Pringle are expected to become free agents, leaving the team with Mooney, Chase Claypool and Equanimous St. Brown. If Chicago adds Smith-Schuster, it would improve their late passing attack and give Justin Fields a much-needed possession-type receiver to target in 2023.
Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Sports Illustrated and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Click here to read all of his articles here on SI Fantasy. You can follow Michael on ChirpingFacebook, YouTube and Instagram for your breaking fantasy news and industry best analysis to help you win a fantasy championship!