Blue Rated Wideouts Week 4 2023

By KC Joyner
KC Joyner

The volatile scoring nature of the wide receiver position may cause more start-sit headaches for fantasy managers than any other position, but when things go well wide receivers can post point totals capable of winning fantasy games.

How does one know which wide receivers are capable of posting those game-winning point totals? My player grading system (a full version of which can be found at aims to identify these players via an overall/upside/downside approach. A player's overall grade measures his likely performance, the downside the grade indicates how a player is apt to fare if things go poorly for him that week, and the upside grade measures the scoring ceiling of a player if things go well in a given contest.

This grading system also uses five color-coded categories: blue (indicating someone who can post elite point totals), green (a strong starter), yellow (a solid backup or a potential starter in bye weeks or deep leagues), orange (a desperation play), and red (someone who should not be started).

This means fantasy managers who are looking for big scoring potential at wide receiver should aim for someone who has a blue-rated upside grade (which is 90-100 in my system). This weekly article series will identify all the blue-rated upside wideouts in a given week and then provide details on a few of the unexpected candidates on this board. It will also detail the strength of the matchup each of these receivers is facing via a matchup points total of 1-100, with 100 being most favorable.

Like last week, this week has a much larger than usual group of blue-rated wide receivers for a variety of reasons ranging from cornerback injuries to wideouts taking a big forward step performance-wise.

Week 4 wide receivers with blue-rated upside


Chris Olave, New Orleans

Olave has a new quarterback in Jameis Winston, who is known to throw plenty of deep passes regardless of coverage, but fantasy managers can take some solace in that the coverage level Olave may face is subpar. He is likely to see a lot of Bucs cornerback Jamel Dean, which is a plus matchup given that Dean has allowed 10.8 yards per target this year (per Stathead) and is allowing an average of 9.8 PPR PPG. That combination should vault Olave to a very strong point total this week.


Adam Thielen, Carolina

Thielen was brought into Carolina to give Bryce Young a dependable veteran pass catcher, as Thielen ranked 21st in wide receiver receptions over the previous three seasons. Thielen is 11th in that category so far this year and the potential to face Vikings nickel cornerback Josh Metellus (or someone else if Metellus can't play this week) could allow Thielen to rack up the huge point totals he has generated in each of the past two games.


Joshua Palmer, Los Angeles Chargers

Palmer will be first in line to get the targets that the Mike Williams injury has vacated for the Chargers offense. That alone gives him notable upside potential, but Palmer will also benefit from facing Raiders cornerback Jakorian Bennett in coverage, as Bennett has allowed a ridiculously high 10.9 YPT and 13.5 PPR PPG this season. Those factors could combine to earn Palmer 20+ PPR points this week if all goes well.