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Fantasy Football PPR Sleepers: Kenny Britt

As a general rule of thumb, you don’t make friends with Cleveland Browns receivers.

Just quickly, when did fantasy owners become so snobby? In case you haven’t already figured it out, repeat after me: running backs in the first two rounds, receivers, then quarterbacks. It’s so simple!

Or, maybe not.

There’s a lot to be said about all the wide receivers who will slip through the cracks. Outside of your Top 30 guys, you could make a case that pretty much anyone is a sleeper, but if there’s a name that deserves to head the list, it’s Kenny Britt.

I get it, everyone wants the pure bred stallion. Injuries and targets keep you up at night, but while everyone is focused on the ground game, don’t let it distract you from the fact that teams like the Browns still hold some special little gems.

[the_ad id=”384″]To be clear, Britt isn’t the kind of player who will win you a league. He is, however, the kind of player that can help you win each week, something he’s proven already by posting his first 1,000-yard season last year. Since he does, y’know, play for the Browns, though, breaking Britt down into bite size pieces does give us a clearer look at what his ceiling actually is, and most importantly, debunk the myth that players can’t have great seasons in crappy offenses.


Britt should be good for, let’s say, 130 targets this season. Bad quarterback play ain’t gonna faze him, and since Britt spent 2016 catching passes from Jared Goff and Case Keenum, you can be damn sure he’s prepared for whatever wrench the Browns throw at him.

Since we’re on the topic of the Rams, Goff and Keenum combined for nine interceptions last season, and neither managed to complete more than 60% of their passes. It’s almost a miracle Britt managed 68 receptions, and even though it’s hard to find nice things to say about the Browns offense, one thing is for sure: They are still going to pass the ball a lot.

I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without addressing about the elephant in the room: Terrelle Pryor. Like you already know, his absence means a lot. And by a lot, I mean a high number of targets, because last season Pryor was thrown to 132 times. By my math, if you add up all the targets within the Browns offense last year, Pryor was targeted 26% of the time — large shoes indeed for Britt to fill, no matter what he says.

The good news is, though, right next to Pryor, tight end Gary Barnidge and wide receiver Andrew Hawkins were also given their marching orders. The two of them combined were good for 136 targets last year, and even though Isaiah Crowell is a valuable stud, the Browns did throw the ball 45 more times than they ran it last year.

So in a nutshell, there are a lot fewer mouths to feed in the Dawg Pound. If you’re still concerned, keep in mind Pryor put up only five more yards than Britt last season, despite seeing 23 more targets. Of course, not everything is wrapped up in a neat little package, which brings me to my next point…

Corey Coleman

Britt averaged 14.7 yards per reception last season (fourth among active players), but even that won’t be enough to fight off second-year man Corey Coleman this year. He’s Britt’s biggest threat at not only targets, but also go-to wide receiver status in Cleveland. So how should you, Mr. Fantasy Owner, feel about all this?

Here’s how I think Cleveland’s offense looks this year:

 Player:  Targets/Receptions  Yards  YPR
 Kenny Britt  130/80  1,070  15.0
 Corey Coleman  100/50  650  12.5
 David Njoku  80/45  400  9.0
 Isaiah Crowell  55/42  330  3.0
 Ricardo Louis  35/20  235  2.0


That’s just a rough estimate, but since Pryor posted similar numbers in Cleveland last year, it’s safe to assume the same from Britt despite him being a lot less physically intimidating. As far as Coleman is concerned, there are two things to think about: health, and whether or not the Browns actually know how to use him.

Coleman played in only 10 games last year after fracturing his hand. He would’ve taken away (excuse the pun) a handful of targets from Pryor last season, but since the Browns are now a man down, there’s no reason why the ball can’t be evenly distributed.

The main thing that hindered Coleman’s rookie season (aside from injuries) was the Browns themselves. They were their own worst enemy when it came to exploiting Coleman’s deep ball potential, and even though he possesses the physicality and acceleration to make big plays, the Browns need to utilize him more in the short yardage game.

Until that happens, Britt is still the man, and that’s not just on dink-and-dunk passes, either. He posted seven deep yardage receptions last year, good for 300 yards. Better yet, on the seven deep targets Britt saw, guess how many he dropped — a whopping zero.

So, Can You Trust Him?

You’re looking at a WR3 here who should be drafted late, so don’t get that confused. Britt does deserve to be in the same conversation as Brandon Marshall, Kevin White, and Eric Decker, though, and just because he’s stuck with what is likely to be Brock Osweiler as his quarterback, don’t discount the size and speed that make him a serious red zone threat.

Coleman is a target threat, yes, but Pryor still managed 8.2 targets per game even when Coleman was on the field. There’s no question Britt has the hands and skills necessary to guarantee yards and receptions, and more importantly, he’s missed only six games over the last three seasons.

Look for Britt to fall late. If you’re against the running back-first strategy and are all for snagging your WR1/2s early, stealing Britt in the dying stages of your draft could mean the difference between a hefty dose of padded stats and winning and losing each week.

Ryan Cook covers Fantasy Football and Fantasy Baseball for Fantrax, You can follow him on Twitter here: @RyanCook13

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