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Marshall's stock rises; Jackson, Robinson could be busts

Who said there's an offseason in the NFL? From Peyton Manning to Tim Tebow and the Saints bounty scandal, the NFL has continued to be at the forefront of the sports world.

All of this news, in addition to the flurry of major free-agent transactions and trades, has made for a lot of changes in player-fantasy values. In an effort to get you up-to-date on all the news, here's our look at whose stock has risen and fallen as we inch closer to April's draft. We covered quarterbacks on Monday and running backs on Tuesday, so now it's time for the wideouts.


Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker, Broncos: The addition of four-time MVP Peyton Manning should mean big things for Thomas and Decker, both on the field and in the world of fantasy football. I prefer the former as a potential breakout candidate, due to his athleticism and size -- I even have him ranked in the top 10 among fantasy wideouts heading into next season. That makes Thomas worth a third- or fourth-round pick. As for Decker, he should be a good middle-round sleeper candidate.

Brandon Marshall, Bears: Reunited, and it feels so good. That's the feeling in the Windy City, as the Bears acquired Marshall from Miami in a deal that gets him back together with Jay Cutler. The duo made beautiful fantasy music together while in Denver, so both players are experiencing an increase in fantasy value. I don't expect Cutler to turn back into a No. 1 fantasy quarterback, but I do think Marshall will once again be considered a low-end No. 1 at his position in 2012.

Marques Colston, Saints: Was I the only person who was worried about Colston in a non-Saints, non-Drew Brees offense? Probably not, but luckily, we won't have to worry about that, because Colston re-signed with the Saints. As long as he can stay healthy (which is a concern), Colston should be considered a potential high-end No. 2 wideout in fantasyland. He'll be drafted somewhere in the middle rounds.

Brandon Lloyd, Patriots: When I interviewed Lloyd a few weeks back, I suggested that he should sign with the New England Patriots. Mission accomplished. Now that he's back with offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, who helped him thrive in Denver, Lloyd should re-emerge as a solid fantasy wideout. Did I also mention that he'll have Tom Brady throwing him the football? The receiving corps is crowded, but I still think Lloyd can post solid numbers next season. Consider him a viable No. 2 wideout in most drafts.

Robert Meachem, Chargers: Meachem never broke out in New Orleans, but he also wasn't featured in the offense like he will be in San Diego. Chargers coach Norv Turner believes "he's a No. 1 receiver," and catching passes from a stud quarterback like Philip Rivers will just enhance his chances of making a strong fantasy impact. Look for Meachem to come off the board somewhere in the middle rounds as a No. 2 or 3 wideout with terrific statistical upside.


Vincent Jackson, Buccaneers: Jackson was the biggest name among wideouts to switch teams this offseason, and the move isn't going to improve his fantasy value. He's leaving Rivers and an explosive Chargers offense for what promises to be a more run-based attack with Josh Freeman at the helm. Also remember that Jackson wasn't at all consistent, stat-wise, during his time with the Bolts -- that isn't likely to change with the Buccaneers.

Santonio Holmes, Jets: It's bad enough that Holmes failed to finish in the top 30 in fantasy points among wideouts last season. With new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, the Jets are going to run the ball more often -- that's bad news for Holmes and his potential draft value. It also doesn't help that the Men in Green have no one else in the pass attack to draw coverage (unless you consider Chaz Schilens a threat), so Holmes is not in a position to improve on what was a poor 2011 season.

Michael Crabtree, 49ers: If you're one of those fantasy owners waiting for Crabtree to break out, well, it's not going to happen. He's already been losing targets to Vernon Davis; now the Niners have added Randy Moss and Mario Manningham to their pass attack. That's a lot of mouths to feed in an offense that doesn't throw the football a ton. If you do draft Crabtree, it shouldn't be until the middle to late rounds as a reserve.

Laurent Robinson, Jaguars: Robinson was one of the best waiver-wire pickups in fantasy football last season. That was with Tony Romo throwing him the ball, however, not Blaine Gabbert or Chad Henne. Robinson was statistically invisible in his four previous NFL seasons -- and now he won't have the luxury of Miles Austin, Dez Bryant and Jason Witten drawing coverage with his new team. A brutal season could be on the horizon for him.

Santana Moss, Redskins: The Redskins have added veteran receivers Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan to what will be a new-look pass attack next season, so Moss won't be as prominent a member of the offense as he's been in the past. Of course, that's assuming that he even remains with the team (there have been rumors he could be released). As it stands, the team's former No. 1 fantasy wideout won't be worth much more than a late-round look in standard or PPR formats.

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Have a burning question on anything fantasy related? Tweet it to _**@MichaelFabiano**_ or send a question via **Facebook**!

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