Personally, in fantasy football, I’d like to boot the tight end position to the curb due to the lack of viable depth. But the reality is, in most fantasy leagues tight ends are typically included in lineups.
When people plan to target a tight end in drafting, it is a personal preference.
With that being said, here is a look at the top 10 fantasy tight ends tiered in the ranking.
No Brainer Studs:
1. Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs
Hands down, Kelce is my No. 1 tight end target, especially with Tyreek Hill’s status in flux. I do not see Kelce’s numbers dipping at all in 2019. Last season, Kelce drew 150 targets resulting in 103 receptions for 1,336 yards and 10 touchdowns. If he was a wide receiver, he would have finished eighth in WR fantasy points. This makes him worthy of a late first-round or early second-round pick.
2. George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers
Kittle took the fantasy world by storm when he bested his fellow tight ends with 1,377 yards last year.
Though, more than his five touchdowns this year would be sweet. This may easily become the case with Jimmy Garoppolo returning to the huddle. Grab Kittle if he lands perfectly in your hands in the third round if you already have your top WR and RB picks secured.
3. Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles
Ertz finished last year just slightly lower than Kittle in points. He hit career-highs with 116 receptions, 1,163 yards and eight touchdowns in 2018. He also caught 74.4 percent of his 156 targets. For what it worth, Ertz’ fantasy points from last year would have tied him with Stefon Diggs at 12th in WR points. Look for Ertz to hold up his end of the bargain for those who spend a third-round pick on him.
Quarterback-Friendly Tight Ends:
4. Jared Cook, New Orleans Saints
Cook makes for a legit case to produce TE1 numbers. Heck, he finished last year at No. 5 working with a discombobulated Raiders offense. That was after he produced 896 yards and six touchdowns. Just imagine his potential now working with Drew Brees? Brees spreads the ball around, but he has always had good chemistry with his pass-catching tight ends. Cook should outperform his ADP which has him typically falling to Round 7.
5. Eric Ebron, Indianapolis Colts
For those who like a high-risk high-reward tight end, Ebron is your man. He has a quarterback-friendly matchup with Andrew Luck on a weekly basis. Ebron turned 66 catches last year into 13 touchdowns and ranked fourth in fantasy points. Though, the obvious downside is if those touchdowns take a cliff dive in 2019.
Tight Ends with High Ceilings:
6. David Njoku, Cleveland Browns
If Njoku can score more this year, than boom! In his first year playing with mostly with Baker Mayfield, Njoku garnered 88 targets. He managed 639 yards but scored just four touchdowns. Perhaps the presence Odell Beckham Jr. drawing double coverage will force Mayfield to find Njoku open on red zone plays.
There is definitely tons of potential for Njoku to reward much higher than where he will be picked this year.
7. Trey Burton, Chicago Bears
It seemed at times that Burton was not living up to his preseason hype. He did not exactly score Travis Kelce fantasy points, but he did finish sixth in this stat. He managed six touchdowns and turned 76 targets into 54 catches and 569 yards. He and Mitch Trubisky will continue to grow their chemistry and with that, hopefully, more fantasy points will be had.
8. Hunter Henry, Los Angeles Chargers
Henry could belong in the quarterback-friendly tier. However, we need to see more of him on the field, healthy and not playing with Antonio Gates, who seems to still be around. For now, Hunter will fall later in drafting but comes with plenty of upside to produce TE1 numbers. After all, Philip Rivers has never been a quarterback to shy away from getting his tight ends involved
9. Austin Hooper, Atlanta Falcons
Hooper, who is highly underrated, was targeted by Matt Ryan 88 times last season.
Will this high volume of targets repeat? That’s the burning question. He finished 2018 with the seventh-most fantasy points, but once fantasy drafting starts taking place, Hooper will likely be only an afterthought. This makes him worth a low-round flyer playing on a Falcons pass-heavy offense.
10. Evan Engram, New York Giants
Boldly, I’m throwing Engram in as a top-10 tight end. His success will, of course, depend on Eli Manning and his fading strong arm. But without Odell Beckham Jr. around, Engram stands to see an uptick in targets. When Beckham missed substantial time in 2017, Engram finished the year with 722 yards and six touchdowns. Plus, his smaller 6-foot-3 stature classifies Engram as more of a wide receiver.