If you were one of those unfortunate enough to have Jimmy Graham on your team in week 13, my condolences. Zero points, on zero targets in what should have been a nice matchup are tough to swallow. I certainly expected more from Graham, and am willing to bet even those down on Graham expected more than, well, nothing. Still, this is a new week so we need to concentrate more in the future; here is how the tight end position breaks down for week 14:
Points per Game
|Rob Gronkowski||New England||$8000||@ San Diego||2nd||18.3||16.8|
|Jimmy Graham||New Orleans||$6500||vs Carolina||12th||15.7||0|
|Coby Fleener||Indianapolis||$5700||@ Cleveland||11th||11.4||31.7|
|Martellus Bennett||Chicago||$5200||vs Dallas||31st||14.7||21.9|
|Julius Thomas||Denver||$5200||vs Buffalo||8th||15.8||2.3|
Rob Gronkowski, New England, $8,000 – No, Gronkowski did not have a monster game, though if you compare it to what Graham did it was. More important, week 13 was the tenth consecutive games with over 11 fantasy-points for Gronkowski. Again this week, Gronkowski has a tough matchup; again, Gronkowski is worth paying for. He has simply been the best and most dependable tight end this season. The only downside is it will be tough to get better than quadruple value from him given his price.
Jimmy Graham, New Orleans, $6,500 – While I am a pessimist at heart, I consider myself an optimistic pessimist – I am positive that things will go wrong. The upside to Graham’s disaster in week 13 is a nice price decrease just in time to face Carolina. In Graham’s last game against Carolina, he had 21.3 fantasy-points. Last season – when Carolina had a good defense — Graham had 11 receptions for 131 yards and three touchdowns against the Panthers. I would be willing to take a “risk” on Graham this week.
Coby Fleener, Indianapolis, $5,700 — Sure, Fleener’s monster game came a week later than expected, but it still came. Fleener exploded for 31.7 fantasy-points on Sunday against Washington. This week’s matchup is considerably harder as Cleveland ranks 11th against tight ends this season. I would not expect another huge game from Fleener, but I think he is a pretty good bet for double-digits against the Browns.
Martellus Bennett, Chicago, $5,200 – Bennett might have gotten lost in the tight end shuffle last week. He quietly had a very nice game, giving owners 21.9 fantasy-points for only a $4,000 investment. Not only does he have a favorable matchup this week – Dallas ranks 31st against tight ends – but there is the added motivation of facing a former team. While Bennett has only faced Dallas twice since leaving the team, he does have 13 receptions for 102 yards and a touchdown in those two games. Bennett is another solid tight end option for your teams this week.
Julius Thomas, Denver, $5,200 – We do not know if Thomas will play in week 14 yet, though the reports thus far seem to indicate he will. The matchup is pretty tough, and $5,200 is also pretty pricey for a player who has not played the last two games. I am not considering Thomas for Daily fantasy in week 14.
Five Mid-Priced TE
Points per Game
|Greg Olsen||Carolina||$4900||@ New Orleans||3rd||14.6||10.9|
|Jason Witten||Dallas||$4700||@ Chicago||32nd||9.6||1.8|
|Antonio Gates||San Diego||$4700||vs New England||25th||13.2||15.3|
|Heath Miller||Pittsburgh||$4600||@ Cincinnati||21st||10.3||16.2|
|Travis Kelce||Kansas City||$4500||@ Arizona||27th||10.4||6.6|
Greg Olsen, Carolina, $4,900 — All the stats suggest that Olsen is not a good option. New Orleans has been good against tight ends this season; Olsen only had six fantasy-points the last time he faced New Orleans, and only managed 10.9 fantasy-points against Minnesota on Sunday. I still like him this week though. If Heath Miller can manage 16.2 fantasy-points against New Orleans, there is no reason that Olsen cannot have a good game against the Saints.
Jason Witten, Dallas, $4,700 – I find it a little strange that Witten gets a price increase after a 1.8 fantasy-point game. I suppose it has to do with the opponent since Chicago has been the worst team against tight ends. The matchup is the key here. Witten makes a nice option even coming off a disappointing game.
Antonio Gates, San Diego, $4,700 — After a three week hiatus, Gates returned to fantasy relevance in week 13, racking up 15.3 fantasy-points against a good Baltimore tight end defense. Things look even better for Gates this week with him playing at home against New England which has struggled against opposing tight ends.
Heath Miller, Pittsburgh, $4,600 –Miller is a tough player to evaluate. He has averaged 10.3 fantasy-points per game this season, and has topped 20 fantasy-points twice, and ten fantasy points four time. He also has scored in single-digits in eight games this season. That goes against what I would expect from Miller – him to be a solid option with limited upside. His matchup this week is nice, but I am a bit apprehensive as Miller has not had a good game in his division yet this season.
Travis Kelce, Kansas City, $4,500 – I will not go so far as to say Kelce is dead to me yet, but he is on thin ice. In a very favorable matchup, he managed only 6.6 fantasy-points in week 13. It was also his third game in the last five with fewer than seven fantasy-points. While Kelce has a nice matchup this week, I just think there are a number of better tight end options available.
Points per Game
|Delanie Walker||Tennessee||$4200||vs New York Giants||19th||12.8||1.6|
|Mychal Rivera||Oakland||$3300||vs San Francisco||15th||7.8||5.1|
|Kyle Rudolph||Minnesota||$3300||vs New York Jets||29th||7.1||8.7|
|Jermaine Gresham||Cincinnati||$3200||vs Pittsburgh||23rd||7.9||8.3|
|Anthony Fasano||Kansas City||$3000||@ Arizona||27th||6.3||9.0|
Delanie Walker, Tennessee, $4,200 – Walker has had a tough schedule recently, facing three top-10 defenses against tight ends in his last three games. That makes for a buying opportunity this week with him playing the Giants who have been below average against tight ends this season.
Mychal Rivera, Oakland, $3,300 – Rivera’s 5.1 fantasy-points in week 13 might have been the highlight of Oakland’s game last week, they were that bad. Things do not look to get any better this week with the Raiders hosting a San Francisco team that was embarrassed at home on Thanksgiving. I want to like Rivera, but after what Oakland “did” in week 13, I just cannot recommend him.
Kyle Rudolph, Minnesota, $3,300 – Sure, he had only two receptions last week, but Rudolph did manage to score 8.7 fantasy-points on those two receptions. He has also been looking a bit better each week since coming back from his groin injury. Good thing he is healthy since the Jets have had major issues against tight ends this season. I would much rather g with Rudolph than Rivera this week.
Jermaine Gresham, Cincinnati, $3,200 – Just say no to Gresham this week. Gresham has been a solid fantasy option the last few games for sure. But, I am just not willing to take the chance on Gresham when the Steelers were able to shut out Jimmy Graham in week 13.
Anthony Fasano, Kansas City, $3,000 – I feel like I have to include a $3000 option in this column each week, this week it is Fasano. Fasano has three touchdown receptions in his last four games, Arizona has allowed three touchdown reception to tight ends in the last four games and ranks 27th against tight ends this season.
That is our look at tight ends this week. You can catch me on Twitter @STCDub.