Nov 1, 2012
As far as fantasy football goes, the tight end play we saw during Week 8 was some of oddest we’ve seen. Two tight ends had more than 145 receiving yards and eight tight ends scored touchdowns, but only four compiled double-digit fantasy points. That’s a lot of touchdowns and not many points, which happens when your only catches are touchdowns. Anthony Fasano, Leonard Pope, Kellen Davis and John Phillips each had a touchdown catch, but also had a combined total of six catches for 31 yards on seven targets – which was 12 catches, 136 yards and 15 targets fewer than Jason Witten, who did not score a touchdown.
How will this week turn out? Let’s take a look at our Fantasy Football Week 9 Tight End Rankings and find out.
::RANKINGS UPDATED AS OF NOVEMBER 1, 2012::
1. Jimmy Graham (New Orleans Saints) vs. Philadelphia
Graham was third in fantasy points among tight ends last week due with five catches for 63 yards and one touchdown on 10 targets in the Saints’ loss to the Broncos. Due to his ankle injury and a bye week, it was his first touchdown since Week 3, and he’s sixth at his position in fantasy points. Graham has what would be a tough match-up for most tight ends against the Eagles, but he isn’t any ordinary tight end, and we don’t expect him to be slowed much by Philly.
Point Projection: 15 points
2. Jason Witten (Dallas Cowboys) @ Atlanta
The Cowboys fell behind early to the Giants last week, forcing Dallas to chuck the ball all over the yard. The beneficiary was Witten, who led all tight ends with 18 receptions, 167 yards and 22 targets. And though a Cowboys tight end did find the end zone, it was the aforementioned John Phillips, and not Witten, who scored. Witten now leads all tight ends in receptions and targets, and is second in receiving yards, but only sixth in fantasy points because he has just a single touchdown on the season. We have to believe that’s going to change, starting this week against the Falcons.
Point Projection: 14 points
3. Owen Daniels (Houston Texans) vs. Buffalo
Daniels and the Texans had their bye last week, yet despite the inaction, he’s fourth in fantasy points, receiving yards and touchdowns (tied) among tight ends this season. He should be in line for a good game this week against Buffalo, who have held tight ends to just one touchdown, but have also allowed the 10th-most receiving yards in the league to them.
Point Projection: 12 points
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4. Heath Miller (Pittsburgh Steelers) @ New York Giants
Miller was one of the four tight ends who scored double-digit fantasy points last week, snagging his sixth touchdown of the season during Pittsburgh’s win over Washington. He ended the day with just four receptions for 41 yards, but those numbers haven’t been unusual for him this season, considering he has yet to break the 70 receiving yard mark. But due to his six touchdowns (second among tight ends), Miller is second at his position in fantasy points, and faces a Giants team this week that has allowed 89 or more receiving yards to tight ends three times this season, including Jason Witten’s monster game last week.
Point Projection: 11 points
5. Tony Gonzalez (Atlanta Falcons) vs. Dallas
Gonzalez didn’t have anywhere near the game we expected last week in Atlanta’s win over Philadelphia, with season-lows of three catches and 29 yards. Just a couple weeks ago he led tight ends in nearly every statistical category, but after a pair of middling games and a bye week, he’s fallen to third in fantasy points, receiving yards and tied for fourth in touchdowns, though he’s still second in receptions. And even though Gonzalez’s opponent this week, the Cowboys, have clamped down on tight ends recently, we think he’ll find a way to get into the end zone for the first time since Week 5.
Point Projection: 10 points
6. Greg Olsen (Carolina Panthers) @ Washington
The turmoil in Carolina grows as the team lost again last week, to Chicago, with Olsen managing just three receptions, 23 yards and five targets. He is tied for 15th in fantasy points, but hasn’t compiled 40 or more receiving yards since Week 4, which is also the week he scored his only touchdown of the year. Fortunately, he has a fabulous match-up in Washington on Sunday against the Redskins, who have allowed the second-most fantasy points per game in the league to tight ends.
Point Projection: 9 points
7. Jermaine Gresham (Cincinnati Bengals) vs. Denver
Gresham was not in action last week as the Bengals were on their bye. He’s been a solid albeit unspectacular contributor this season, and should be on fantasy rosters as a back-up, though we like him as a starter this week against the Broncos. Just two teams have given up more fantasy points per game to tight ends than Denver, who have allowed at least 50 yards and one touchdown to tight ends in five of their seven games this year.
Point Projection: 8 points
8. Antonio Gates (San Diego Chargers) vs. Kansas City
Could it be over for Gates at this point in his career? From the standpoint of being a premier fantasy tight end, yes it could. But he can still be far more productive than he has been lately, like the miserable 14-yard, two-catch, four-target game he had during San Diego’s embarrassing loss to Cleveland. It was the second time in his last three games that Gates had fewer than 20 receiving yards, but during the other game in that span he had 81 yards and two touchdowns. He plays a bad Chiefs team this week, but they’ve actually done well against tight ends, not allowing 60 receiving yards in a game to the position all season, so we’re not overly optimistic that Gates will ramp up his production.
Point Projection: 7 points
9. Brandon Myers (Oakland Raiders) vs. Tampa Bay
Myers continues to grab nearly every ball thrown to him, last week catching all three of the passes targeted for him while gaining 49 yards as the Raiders took down the Chiefs. He’s caught 31 of the 37 passes thrown to him, is seventh among tight ends in receptions and sixth in receiving yards, all of which would make for a good fantasy tight end if he caught a touchdown. But he hasn’t. And Myers’ opponent this week, Tampa, has only allowed two touchdowns all season to tight ends, so we don’t believe it’ll be in the cards for him this week either. However, he is a solid PPR and yardage play and with the rate tight ends are not scoring touchdowns, he should make for a solid Week 9 play.
Point Projection: 7 points
10. Kyle Rudolph (Minnesota Vikings) @ Seattle
It was another disappointing outing for Rudolph last week, as he managed all of two catches for 17 yards on two targets during Minnesota’s loss to Tampa Bay. He’s still seventh among tight ends in fantasy points because he’s third in touchdown catches, but doesn’t catch enough of the passes thrown his way in order to be consistently good. Rudolph has received the ninth-most targets at his position, but is only 16th in catches. He has a chance to turn that around this week against a Seattle team that has given up the fifth-most receptions and eighth-most receiving yards in the league to tight ends.
Point Projection: 7 points
11. Brandon Pettigrew (Detroit Lions) @ Jacksonville
Pettigrew amassed 74 receiving yards last week as Detroit beat Seattle, a total that was good for third among tight ends on the week. He compiled those yards on seven catches, (tied for third at the position) and nine targets. Only three tight ends have more catches than Pettigrew this season, and only six have more receiving yards, but his one touchdown has hampered him in fantasy scoring, where he’s tied for 15th. He faces the Jaguars this week, and they’re one of just two teams in the league not to have allowed a touchdown to a tight end, but that streak can’t hold all season and Pettigrew is too good not to find the end zone more often.
Point Projection: 7 points
12. Brent Celek (Philadelphia Eagles) @ New Orleans
Celek caught three passes for 32 yards while being targeted five times as the Eagles fell to the Falcons last week. Though he’s fifth at his position in receiving yards, 40 percent of them came during his Week 2 game against Baltimore, when he had 157 yards. Celek has had just one game with at least 40 yard since that time, though he should break that mark this week against a terrible Saints defense that has allowed over 160 yards to tight ends over their last two games.
Point Projection: 7 points
13. Scott Chandler (Buffalo Bills) @ Houston
Like Gresham, Chandler did not play last week because he and his Buffalo teammates were on their bye. Though he’s 11th in fantasy scoring at his position this year, he has just three fantasy points over his last three games. Chandler doesn’t catch a lot of passes, and has the second-fewest receptions among tight ends who are in the top-20 in scoring, relying on touchdowns for his points. Thankfully, he plays a Houston team this week that allows touchdowns to tight ends – four in seven games.
Point Projection: 6 points
14. Martellus Bennett (New York Giants) vs. Pittsburgh
Bennett was targeted six times as the Giants beat the Cowboys last Sunday, and though he caught four of those passes, managed to pick up only 29 yards. His early season success hasn’t carried over, and he has just 12 fantasy points over his last five games. Bennett should not be starting for fantasy owners any longer, especially this week against a Steelers team that has held tight ends to fewer than 20 yards in two of their last four games.
Point Projection: 5 points
15. Jared Cook (Tennessee Titans) vs. Chicago
Cook was targeted four times during the Titans’ loss to the Colts last Sunday, catching three passes for 45 yards. He gets a decent number of yards each game, and is just one yard from being tied with Vernon Davis and Brandon Pettigrew for seventh among tight ends. Unfortunately, Cook is 16th in targets, with fewer looks this season than Jacob Tamme. He has a decent match-up with the Bears, who have allowed the fourth-most receptions in the league to tight ends, but the Titans have a bunch of good receiving options, leaving Cook to be forgotten from time to time.
Point Projection: 4 points
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