What Is The Third-Year Wide Receiver Rule?
The third-year wide receiver rule is a commonly accepted belief among fantasy football enthusiasts that states that wide receivers tend to see the biggest jump in production during their 3rd year in the NFL. This uptick in production is often attributed to the fact that most wide receivers need time to develop and learn the nuances of playing the position at the professional level.
While some anecdotal evidence supports this claim, a fair amount of evidence suggests the 3rd year wide receiver rule is more myth than reality. Many studies have shown that wide receivers actually see their biggest jump in production during their second year in the league.
Why Do So Many People Believe In The Third Year Wide Receiver Rule?
Well, part of it has to do with the fact that there are a few high-profile examples of receivers who have had breakout seasons in their third year. Julio Jones and A.J. Green are two recent examples of receivers who fit this bill.
Another reason why the rule is so widely accepted is that it reinforces the idea that patience is a virtue when it comes to fantasy football. After all, if you draft a receiver in the first or second round and he doesn’t produce big numbers right away, you can take solace in the fact that he might just be a late bloomer who is about to have a big third year.
Should You Buy Into The Wide Receiver Rule?
If you’re the type of fantasy owner who is patient and willing to take a chance on young players, it might make sense to target receivers in their third year.
But if you’re looking for immediate production from your wideouts, you might be better off focusing on veteran players or those in their second year. But there’s a risk/reward factor you need to weigh, as you could be drafting a sleeper that can lead your team to a championship.