We are now seven weeks into the 2023 NFL season, and Jacksonville Jaguars WR Calvin Ridley has not lived up to anything remotely close to expectations. With half the fantasy football regular season still to go, what should fantasy managers do with Ridley? Where does he land in our rest-of-season rankings?
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How Week 7 Victory Impacts Fantasy Values of Calvin Ridley, Trevor Lawrence, and Christian Kirk
One of the biggest question marks entering the 2023 season was how Ridley would look after nearly a two-year layoff. The training camp reports were glowing, but as we know, those reports cannot be trusted.
Nevertheless, the reports pushed Ridley’s ADP from the fifth round all the way up to the 2/3 turn. Essentially, all of Ridley’s upward mobility was erased. He had to perform like a WR1, or he wouldn’t be worth his cost in fantasy drafts.
Calvin Ridley Has Been a Huge Disappointment
Through seven weeks, Ridley has easily been one of the biggest busts in fantasy football. It didn’t look that way after Week 1 when he caught eight of 11 targets for 101 yards and a touchdown. A Week 2 dud was dismissed as a random occurrence. But then Ridley flopped again in Week 3.
After Week 3, Ridley’s perceived value started to dip. Oftentimes, this can mean it’s time to buy. And there was a point where I had Ridley as a buy. But after watching him in London in Week 4, everything changed.
It’s important to adjust opinions based on new information. After that London game against the Falcons, I was fully convinced Ridley was cooked. Gone was that guy who was an elite WR1 in 2020. And at 28 years old, he’s probably never coming back.
After Ridley smashed in Week 5, posting a 7-122 line, his supporters were largely back in. I, meanwhile, immediately put him back in my buy-low/sell-high column as a sell.
MORE: Buy Low, Sell High Week 7
Sure enough, Ridley disappeared once again in Week 6. And he was invisible against the Saints on Thursday Night Football as well.
Make no mistake about it, Christian Kirk is the Jaguars’ WR1. When Zay Jones returns, he should be the WR2 because he’s better than Ridley.
The optimal Jaguars offense will have Ridley as the WR3, only playing in three-receiver sets. He’s not creating separation. He’s not making plays on the ball.
The only impressive play Ridley had was a near-catch down the sideline on a perfectly thrown ball where he generated not a single inch of separation, but his feet were just barely out of bounds.
If every NFL team was drafting WRs from scratch to build a team to specifically win this year, there are easily 40, maybe 50 players that should go ahead of Ridley. He now has four games with 7.0 fantasy points or fewer. He’s not a weekly starter.
In my last rest-of-season rankings update, I lowered Ridley all the way to WR27. My next update will be after this week’s games, and I anticipate moving him even lower.
Ridley’s drop in the rankings doesn’t directly affect anyone else. It’s more than his struggles have catapulted Kirk into the top 24. He’s the best WR on this team and has been a reliable WR2 all season. He should remain so.
When Jones returns, he could resume his status as a startable WR3. However, it’s been a long time since we saw him healthy. We don’t know what type of role he will come back to or when he will be able to play at all.
I would downgrade Trevor Lawrence, but he’s been one of the most unexciting fantasy QBs all season already. Lawrence has yet to hit 20 fantasy points in a single game, but he’s also scored below 15 just once.
Lawrence doesn’t lose you matchups, but he doesn’t help you win them either. He’s a high-floor QB2 with a very, very low ceiling.
MORE: Fantasy News Tracker
To sum up the state of the Jaguars for fantasy purposes, we have Travis Etienne Jr. and Christian Kirk as every week must-starts. Evan Engram is also a must-start, but mostly because the tight end position is a disaster.
Fantasy managers with Lawrence and Ridley should look to sell if anyone is still valuing them anywhere close to preseason levels.
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