Wide Receiver vs. Cornerback Matchup Analysis: Week 1
This is a free sample of premium weekly content contained in the 4for4 DFS subscription. Not a subscriber? Sign up now!
We're ready to kick off the 2019 season. I'm back covering the wide receivers and their cornerback matchups. When it comes to selecting receivers in DFS, it’s important to understand who will cover them. Many times defense-versus-position stats alone don't tell the whole story or overlooked defensive injuries will have a significant effect.
Below is a chart detailing each wide receiver versus cornerback matchup for Week 1, target rates, cornerback yards per target and reception, catch rate allowed and yards per target allowed. We'll be using data from 2018 (minimum 20 targets in coverage), as well as our own knowledge of how good or bad the cornerbacks actually for the first few weeks of the season. The two most important columns are fantasy points per target and the last one (+/-), which indicates whether the matchup is an upgrade or downgrade for the receiver (N indicates a neutral matchup).
After the chart, I also provide key notes such as veteran receivers that will square off against rookies, how a wide receiver matchup might affect the team's tight end, etc. There are some key injuries to watch throughout the rest of the week and this chart will be updated to reflect breaking news.
Week 1 Wide Receiver vs. Cornerback Matchups
Note: An asterisk (*) indicates WR or CB plays outside in two-wide sets. N' in the Upgrade/Downgrade (+/-) column indicates neutral matchup. Click header to sort. Outside of shadow situations, LWRs and RWRs generally match up with both outside cornerbacks over the course of a game, as almost every wide receivers moves around the offensive formation to varying degrees, and almost every defense plays zone coverage on at least half of its snaps.
M/U = aFPA ranking vs. WR. Tar % = targets per snap in coverage. C% = catch rate allowed. YPR = yards per reception allowed. YPT = yards per target allowed. FP/T = PPR fantasy points per target allowed.
|Day||Tm||WR||Pos||Opp||CB||M/U||Tar %||C %||YPR||YPT||FP/T||Shad||(+/-)|
|Sun||ARI||Christian Kirk||LWR||DET||Rashaan Melvin||11||21.5%||57.4%||15.31||8.78||1.80||N||+|
|Sun||ARI||Larry Fitzgerald||SWR||DET||Justin Coleman||11||13.3%||53.4%||10.10||5.40||1.28||N||-|
|Sun||ARI||Michael Crabtree||RWR||DET||Darius Slay||11||16.9%||47.6%||11.92||5.67||1.55||N||N|
|Sun||ATL||Julio Jones||LWR||MIN||Xavier Rhodes||5||17.1%||56.5%||10.85||6.13||1.35||Y||-|
|Sun||ATL||Mohamed Sanu||SWR||MIN||Mackensie Alexander||5||11.3%||47.2%||11.29||5.33||1.01||N||-|
|Sun||ATL||Calvin Ridley||RWR||MIN||Trae Waynes||5||13.7%||62.3%||11.94||7.43||1.48||N||N|
|Sun||BAL||Miles Boykin||LWR||MIA||Eric Rowe||29||14.6%||58.3%||15.14||8.83||2.47||N||+|
|Sun||BAL||Willie Snead||SWR||MIA||Minkah Fitzpatrick||29||10.9%||47.1%||15.25||7.18||1.19||N||-|
|Sun||BAL||Marquise Brown||RWR||MIA||Xavien Howard||29||12.7%||44.2%||15.43||6.83||1.70||N||-|
|Sun||BUF||John Brown||LWR||NYJ||Darryl Roberts||32||9.7%||61.0%||15.12||9.22||1.97||N||+|
|Sun||BUF||Cole Beasley||SWR||NYJ||Brian Poole||32||11.2%||64.8%||12.46||8.07||1.57||N||N|
|Sun||BUF||Zay Jones||RWR||NYJ||Trumaine Johnson||32||14.9%||58.2%||14.94||8.69||1.56||N||N|
|Sun||CAR||D.J. Moore||LWR||LAR||Marcus Peters||22||13.6%||62.3%||15.09||9.41||2.09||N||+|
|Sun||CAR||Jarius Wright||SWR||LAR||Nickell Robey-Coleman||22||10.6%||51.3%||8.65||4.44||1.57||N||N|
|Sun||CAR||Curtis Samuel||RWR||LAR||Aqib Talib||22||10.8%||56.5%||14.85||8.39||1.40||N||-|
|Thu||CHI||Taylor Gabriel||LWR||GB||Kevin King||19||13.5%||50.0%||13.27||6.64||1.71||N||+|
|Thu||CHI||Anthony Miller||SWR||GB||Josh Jackson||19||12.9%||61.5%||15.50||9.54||1.92||N||+|
|Thu||CHI||Allen Robinson||RWR||GB||Jaire Alexander||19||17.8%||57.5%||14.29||8.22||1.56||N||N|
|Sun||CIN||Damion Willis||LWR||SEA||Tre Flowers||21||13.9%||57.3%||16.09||9.23||1.82||N||+|
|Sun||CIN||Tyler Boyd||SWR||SEA||Ugo Amadi||21||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||CIN||John Ross||RWR||SEA||Shaquill Griffin||21||12.6%||62.9%||13.86||8.71||1.84||N||+|
|Sun||CLE||Rashard Higgins||LWR||TEN||Malcolm Butler||26||16.0%||59.0%||14.67||8.65||2.07||N||+|
|Sun||CLE||Jarvis Landry||SWR||TEN||Logan Ryan||26||10.6%||58.3%||13.25||7.73||1.61||N||+|
|Sun||CLE||Odell Beckham||RWR||TEN||Adoree' Jackson||26||19.2%||57.0%||13.05||7.44||1.61||Y||+|
|Sun||DAL||Michael Gallup||LWR||NYG||Deandre Baker||24||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||DAL||Randall Cobb||SWR||NYG||Julian Love||24||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||DAL||Amari Cooper||RWR||NYG||Janoris Jenkins||24||14.6%||63.5%||13.69||8.69||1.79||N||+|
|Mon||DEN||Courtland Sutton||LWR||OAK||Daryl Worley||14||16.1%||61.1%||13.32||8.14||2.26||N||+|
|Mon||DEN||DaeSean Hamilton||SWR||OAK||Lamarcus Joyner||14||4.4%||63.6%||15.50||9.86||2.17||N||+|
|Mon||DEN||Emmanuel Sanders||RWR||OAK||Gareon Conley||14||12.6%||50.0%||18.90||9.45||1.87||N||+|
|Sun||DET||Kenny Golladay||LWR||ARI||Chris Jones||13||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||DET||Danny Amendola||SWR||ARI||Byron Murphy||13||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||DET||Marvin Jones||RWR||ARI||Tramaine Brock||13||15.5%||46.2%||14.00||6.46||1.26||N||-|
|Thu||GB||Davante Adams||LWR||CHI||Prince Amukamara||12||13.7%||57.0%||13.51||7.70||1.64||N||+|
|Thu||GB||Geronimo Allison||SWR||CHI||Buster Skrine||12||16.4%||63.9%||13.00||8.31||1.86||N||+|
|Thu||GB||Marquez Valdes-Scantling||RWR||CHI||Kyle Fuller||12||16.1%||53.9%||12.00||6.47||1.36||N||-|
|Mon||HOU||DeAndre Hopkins||LWR||NO||Marshon Lattimore||25||13.3%||64.4%||16.60||10.68||1.88||Y||+|
|Mon||HOU||Keke Coutee||SWR||NO||Patrick Robinson||25||2.2%||100.0%||5.00||5.00||1.50||N||N|
|Mon||HOU||Will Fuller||RWR||NO||Eli Apple||25||19.7%||53.8%||14.18||7.62||1.47||N||N|
|Sun||IND||T.Y. Hilton||LWR||LAC||Casey Hayward||1||10.3%||52.5%||14.58||7.66||1.60||Y||N|
|Sun||IND||Parris Campbell||SWR||LAC||Desmond King||1||12.1%||66.7%||8.34||5.56||1.33||N||-|
|Sun||IND||Devin Funchess||RWR||LAC||Michael Davis||1||16.2%||59.6%||11.62||6.93||1.61||N||+|
|Sun||JAX||Chris Conley||LWR||KC||Bashaud Breeland||30||14.6%||48.0%||16.25||7.80||1.26||N||-|
|Sun||JAX||Dede Westbrook||SWR||KC||Kendall Fuller||30||14.0%||67.0%||12.25||8.22||1.76||N||+|
|Sun||JAX||D.J. Chark||RWR||KC||Charvarius Ward||30||24.6%||76.5%||13.15||10.06||1.77||N||+|
|Sun||KC||Tyreek Hill||LWR||JAX||Jalen Ramsey||2||17.3%||48.9%||14.62||7.15||1.33||Y||-|
|Sun||KC||Mecole Hardman||SWR||JAX||D.J. Hayden||2||13.8%||62.9%||7.77||4.89||1.12||N||-|
|Sun||KC||Sammy Watkins||RWR||JAX||A.J. Bouye||2||13.5%||60.3%||10.29||6.21||1.22||Y||-|
|Sun||LAC||Travis Benjamin||LWR||IND||Quincy Wilson||3||8.5%||52.2%||12.50||6.52||1.43||N||N|
|Sun||LAC||Keenan Allen||SWR||IND||Kenny Moore II||3||12.5%||61.4%||9.94||6.11||1.33||N||-|
|Sun||LAC||Mike Williams||RWR||IND||Pierre Desir||3||13.0%||55.2%||15.32||8.46||1.49||N||N|
|Sun||LAR||Brandin Cooks||LWR||CAR||Donte Jackson||15||11.8%||66.7%||14.63||9.75||2.04||N||+|
|Sun||LAR||Cooper Kupp||SWR||CAR||Rashaan Gaulden||15||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||LAR||Robert Woods||RWR||CAR||James Bradberry||15||18.2%||52.0%||14.42||7.49||1.62||N||+|
|Sun||MIA||Preston Williams||LWR||BAL||Jimmy Smith||8||16.3%||55.2%||12.63||6.97||1.46||N||N|
|Sun||MIA||Albert Wilson||SWR||BAL||Brandon Carr||8||14.2%||52.7%||13.95||7.35||1.34||N||-|
|Sun||MIA||DeVante Parker||RWR||BAL||Marlon Humphrey||8||16.4%||41.9%||12.61||5.28||1.27||N||-|
|Sun||MIN||Stefon Diggs||LWR||ATL||Isaiah Oliver||20||17.3%||58.6%||11.35||6.66||1.87||N||+|
|Sun||MIN||Chad Beebe||SWR||ATL||Damontae Kazee||20||3.6%||60.0%||15.58||9.35||2.74||N||+|
|Sun||MIN||Adam Thielen||RWR||ATL||Desmond Trufant||20||14.5%||57.5%||10.64||6.11||1.39||N||-|
|Sun||NE||Josh Gordon||LWR||PIT||Steven Nelson||17||16.5%||46.4%||14.73||6.84||1.42||N||N|
|Sun||NE||Julian Edelman||SWR||PIT||Mike Hilton||17||16.3%||62.1%||11.17||6.93||1.52||N||N|
|Sun||NE||Demaryius Thomas||RWR||PIT||Joe Haden||17||15.0%||54.8%||9.91||5.43||1.30||N||-|
|Mon||NO||Michael Thomas||LWR||HOU||Bradley Roby||31||14.6%||64.1%||16.10||10.32||2.13||N||+|
|Mon||NO||TreQuan Smith||SWR||HOU||Aaron Colvin||31||10.6%||63.6%||9.86||6.27||1.81||N||+|
|Mon||NO||Ted Ginn||RWR||HOU||Johnathan Joseph||31||17.9%||53.6%||12.53||6.71||1.35||N||-|
|Sun||NYG||Cody Latimer||LWR||DAL||Byron Jones||7||12.1%||51.4%||13.25||6.81||1.28||N||-|
|Sun||NYG||Russell Shepard||SWR||DAL||Anthony Brown||7||10.6%||60.5%||14.08||8.51||2.01||N||+|
|Sun||NYG||Sterling Shepard||RWR||DAL||Chidobe Awuzie||7||16.4%||59.0%||13.33||7.87||1.67||N||+|
|Sun||NYJ||Robby Anderson||LWR||BUF||Tre'Davious White||4||13.1%||50.0%||11.70||5.85||1.27||N||-|
|Sun||NYJ||Jamison Crowder||SWR||BUF||Taron Johnson||4||9.8%||45.8%||6.55||3.00||1.01||N||-|
|Sun||NYJ||Quincy Enunwa||RWR||BUF||Levi Wallace||4||10.0%||45.0%||10.11||4.55||1.21||N||-|
|Mon||OAK||Antonio Brown||LWR||DEN||Kareem Jackson||18||10.4%||52.5%||12.16||6.39||1.27||N||-|
|Mon||OAK||Hunter Renfrow||SWR||DEN||Chris Harris||18||15.1%||62.5%||11.08||6.92||1.60||N||N|
|Mon||OAK||Tyrell Williams||RWR||DEN||Bryce Callahan||18||8.6%||67.6%||10.16||6.86||1.36||N||-|
|Sun||PHI||Alshon Jeffery||LWR||WAS||Quinton Dunbar||16||19.7%||68.2%||11.07||7.55||2.12||N||+|
|Sun||PHI||Nelson Agholor||SWR||WAS||Jimmy Moreland||16||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||PHI||DeSean Jackson||RWR||WAS||Josh Norman||16||12.1%||60.0%||11.93||7.16||1.66||N||+|
|Sun||PIT||Donte Moncrief||LWR||NE||Stephon Gilmore||23||14.9%||41.8%||11.63||4.86||1.23||Y||-|
|Sun||PIT||James Washington||SWR||NE||Jason McCourty||23||14.0%||54.8%||14.60||8.00||1.59||Y||N|
|Sun||PIT||JuJu Smith-Schuster||RWR||NE||J.C. Jackson||23||16.5%||48.8%||11.81||5.77||1.07||Y||-|
|Sun||SF||Marquise Goodwin||LWR||TB||Vernon Hargreaves||27||16.2%||66.7%||10.00||6.67||1.33||N||+|
|Sun||SF||Dante Pettis||SWR||TB||M.J. Stewart||27||17.6%||77.4%||12.75||9.87||2.34||N||+|
|Sun||SF||Deebo Samuel||RWR||TB||Carlton Davis||27||12.3%||53.2%||14.80||7.87||1.83||N||+|
|Sun||SEA||DK Metcalf||LWR||CIN||William Jackson||10||11.3%||50.0%||13.18||6.59||1.80||N||+|
|Sun||SEA||Tyler Lockett||SWR||CIN||B.W. Webb||10||11.4%||50.0%||15.03||7.52||1.35||N||-|
|Sun||SEA||Jaron Brown||RWR||CIN||Dre Kirkpatrick||10||14.7%||44.6%||14.86||6.63||1.29||N||-|
|Sun||TB||Mike Evans||LWR||SF||Ahkello Witherspoon||9||18.2%||51.4%||13.61||7.00||1.81||N||+|
|Sun||TB||Chris Godwin||SWR||SF||K'Waun Williams||9||10.5%||75.0%||10.04||7.53||2.00||N||+|
|Sun||TB||Breshad Perriman||RWR||SF||Richard Sherman||9||9.4%||53.3%||13.88||7.40||1.54||N||N|
|Sun||TEN||Tajae Sharpe||LWR||CLE||Greedy Williams||6||-||-||-||-||-||N||+|
|Sun||TEN||Adam Humphries||SWR||CLE||T.J. Carrie||6||13.8%||54.1%||12.18||6.58||1.20||N||-|
|Sun||TEN||Corey Davis||RWR||CLE||Denzel Ward||6||16.0%||47.4%||12.62||5.99||1.38||Y||-|
|Sun||WAS||Terry McLaurin||LWR||PHI||Ronald Darby||28||17.9%||52.3%||11.41||5.97||1.40||N||N|
|Sun||WAS||Trey Quinn||SWR||PHI||Avonte Maddox||28||9.3%||38.2%||11.77||4.50||1.01||N||-|
|Sun||WAS||Paul Richardson Jr.||RWR||PHI||Sidney Jones||28||5.6%||33.3%||10.00||3.33||0.67||N||-|
Chris Godwin, TB ($6,900 FD/$6,200 DK) vs. K'Waun Williams, SF
He's probably going to be one of the highest owned receivers of the slate—a virtual cash game lock. The O/U is at 50 with Tampa's implied total sitting at 25.5. I don't anticipate the run game being too much of a factor here, so give me exposure to the passing game. You'll see Godwin in the slot, as Bruce Arians's Larry Fitzgerald. Williams spent 97% of his coverage routes in the slot, so he's going to get peppered with targets. He allowed a 75% catch rate and 2.0 fantasy points per target last season.
Mike Evans, TB ($7,900 FD/$7,900 DK) vs. Akhello Witherspoon, SF
Evans is going to be your tournament pivot. He's going to be moved around the field and should see Witherspoon, and even Richard Sherman. Witherspoon was responsible for seven touchdowns last season, allowing 1.8 fantasy points per target.
D.J. Moore, CAR ($6,200 FD/$5,500 DK) vs. Marcus Peters, LAR
This game could go overlooked. This one has an O/U at 50.5 with Carolina's total set at 23.75. The defensive line gets a lot of the press, and why wouldn't it when you have Aaron Donald? The Rams secondary has been a weak spot, especially Marcus Peters. His interceptions have been on the decline since his rookie year. Peters allowed 15 yards per catch while being responsible for six scores last season, resulting in 2.1 fantasy points per target.
Brandin Cooks, LAR ($7,000 FD/$6,500 DK) vs. Donte Jackson, CAR
Staying in the Carolina game, the Rams offense may also going overlooked this weekend. I don't think Jared Goff is going to get fat off his recent contract and he's going to be looking to atone for his play in the Super Bowl. Cooks is going to draw second-year corner, Donte Jackson, on most of his routes. Jackson held his own last year, recording four INTs, however, he did allow near 67% catch rate and 14.6 yards per catch. He was also responsible for four scores and gave up 2.04 fantasy points per target.
Rashard Higgins, CLE ($4,500 FD/$3,200 DK) vs. Malcolm Butler, TEN
If you are a "jam in top RBs" guy, you'll need a salary-saver and Higgins is one of them this week. While I expect Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry to get plenty of targets, Higgins won't need many to achieve value and he has one of the most favorable matchups of the week. Malcolm Butler was the opposing QB's target on 16% of their throws and was responsible for eight scores, resulting in 2.1 fantasy points per target allowed. Higgins saw 19 targets during the preseason, and received 51 in 2018 with a 76.5% catch rate. We'll see how Odell Beckham's usage cuts into Rashard's, but Baker Mayfield has no problem looking towards Higgins.
Kenny Golladay, DET ($6,900 FD/$6,300 DK) vs. Chris Jones, ARI
The Lions will face a short-handed Cardinals secondary this week and Detroit's implied total has hit 25. Golladay is a receiver who moves around, so he's going to see some time on two inexperienced corners—UDFA, Chris Jones, who played just 91 snaps last season and Byron Murphy. Golladay led the team in targets with 118 and now 144 targets have opened up with Theo Riddick and Golden Tate no longer in the Motor City. Some of those targets should get spread around to other guys, but Golladay should pace the offense in targets this week.
Alshon Jeffery, PHI ($6,700 FD/$5,900 DK) vs. Quinton Dunbar, PHI
This isn't the most glamorous game on the slate, but the Eagles have a 27.5 implied team total here. Nelson Agholor might have had more targets last season, but Jeffery was second in targets/snap rate behind Zach Ertz and averaged just over seven targets per game. Jeffery will move around, so he should see time on Josh Norman, but he should spend most of his routes on Dunbar's side of the field. Dunbar was an opposing QB's target nearly 20% of the time and allowed a 68.2% reception rate. He was also responsible for five scores and gave up 2.1 fantasy points per target.
Update 9/5/2019: Jeffery popped up on the injury report with a biceps issue. I don't like Thursday pop-ups. We'll have to see how the rest of the week goes, but Sega Entertainment is on the radar for this week. J.J. Arcega-Whiteside ($4800 FD/$3400 DK) was a preseason darling where he did all of his damage against Baltimore.
Update 9/26/2019: Alshon Jeffery not on final injury report. Good news and he can be fired into lineups this week. JJAW should only be considered in larger GPP now.
John Brown, BUF ($5,500 FD/$4,300 DK) vs. Darryl Roberts, NYJ
Brown is a great low-owned play along with Josh Allen this week. Last season, Brown had six games of 100-plus air yards and just two games where he didn't have at least a 10-yard aDOT (average depth of target). Brown is a boom-or-bust receiver and should fit in with Allen's deep ball. Darryl Roberts allowed 25 of the 29 catchable targets thrown at him last year to be caught and allowed three scores. Roberts gave up 9.2 yards and nearly two fantasy points per target.