2013 Outlook: The man they call "Bebe" makes defensive backs cry. He's 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds, runs a 4.38 40-yard dash and outmuscles cornerbacks in the end zone. Combining him with Peyton Manning last year just wasn't fair. Thomas finished as the No. 5 fantasy WR even as teammate Eric Decker finished No. 8, illustrating just what an efficient year the Broncos' passing offense had. But now there's yet another mouth to feed in Denver: Wes Welker. Thomas had 140 targets in 2012, Decker had 120 and slot man Brandon Stokley had 57. There's no way in the world Welker gets only 57 targets this season, which means the other guys will see a drop-off. We still love Bebe. But some of his ultra-high potential is curbed.
2013 Outlook: It was pretty easy when Welker was in New England. You just penciled him in for 110 catches and 1,200 yards every year. But now he's in Denver, sharing the receiving spotlight with Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker, and things feel less certain. For sure, Peyton Manning loves to throw it to the slot; heck, he gave fading Brandon Stokley 57 targets there last year. But the Broncos' outside weapons are so dangerous. Can we really assume Welker will approach the 160-plus targets per season he routinely saw from Tom Brady? We downgraded Welker a bit from his Patriots days, and we'd draft Thomas ahead of him. But he's still a fantasy starter, and should continue to be a PPR monster.
2013 Outlook: In 2012, Decker caught 13 TDs and notched his first 1,000-yard campaign. He's big and fast, and while his hands can be shaky, he's got Peyton Manning throwing him the rock. In short: There was lots to love, right up until the point when the Broncos signed Wes Welker. Denver goes three-wide a ton, so it's not like Welker will send Decker to the bench. But there are only so many targets to go around, and if Decker is a good outside WR, Demaryius Thomas is a superlative one. Decker will have moments in '13, but his overall workload figures to diminish.