2015 Fantasy Football: TIght End Rankings

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4.) Martellus Bennett, Bears – With all the injuries the Bears receiving core has suffered this preseason (Jeffrey, White, Royal, Wilson), Bennett’s value keeps getting higher. He’s already developed a strong rapport with QB Jay Cutler and is coming off a career best season where he led all TEs in catches (90). The Black Unicorn is playing for a contract next year and could easily finish in the top 3 overall fantasy tight ends.

5.) Travis Kelce, Chiefs – I led my busts post with Kelce, but I think he’s primed for a good year just not as good as his ADP (46) projects. Kelce has dealt with nagging injuries throughout his career, is playing for a team that rarely throws the ball (28th in pass attempts) and with a QB who just doesn’t throw the ball downfield. All that being said, Kelce is an elite athlete for a tight end and dangerous after the catch. I expect him to improve on his solid line from last year (67 | 862 | 5) and finish in the top 5 fantasy TEs.

6.) Jordan Cameron, Dolphins – It’s really just a matter of health with Cameron, he has the size, speed, and athleticism to be a force as a receiver. He’s leaving a team with one of the worst QB situations in the league and going to one with a promising QB, plenty of other weapons, and an offense that utilizes the TE often (84 targets for Clay last year). If Cameron can stay on the field he has a shot to finish in the top 5 among fantasy TEs.

7.) Delanie Walker, Titans – Despite the awful play from the Titans QBs last season, Walker still managed to put up a solid line with 63 catches, 890 yards, and 4 TDs. With rookie QB Marcus Mariota showing promise in training camp, Walker has a shot to improve across the board.

8.) Julius Thomas, Jags – His preseason injury is a bit of a concern since he wasn’t exactly an ironman last year, but he’s the most talented pass catcher the Jags have and should get plenty of targets. I don’t have a ton of confidence in Blake Bortles but he should be better this season as should the Jags o-line and offense as a whole. Thomas isn’t going to put up the monster numbers he did with Peyton Manning, but should still be a useful fantasy starter if he stays healthy.

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9.) Tyler Eifert, Bengals – I’ve ended up with Eifert in all three of my drafts so far and have been happy where I got him each time. He’s currently going in the 13th round despite the fact that he’s got the Bengals TE job all to himself now that Jermaine Gresham is gone. The 2013 1st round pick has the size, speed, and hands to be a weapon in the passing game. He had borderline value last season while splitting targets and with the TE1 job now Eifert could blow up this season.

10.) Jason Witten, Cowboys – Has there been a season where Witten didn’t finish among the top ten tight ends in fantasy? Even at 33 years old, he will still be Tony Romo’s safety-valve and finish with his usual 70ish catches for around 800 yards and 5-6 TDs. The lack of a bell-cow RB could mean more passes for Romo and more targets for Witten. The 90 targets Witten saw last year was the lowest since 2005, but I think that had more to do with a run-heavy scheme than any slippage of Witten’s skills.

11.) Dwayne Allen, Colts – It’s hard to accurately judge Allen’s value when he has been injury prone and splitting snaps with Cody Fleener. When both are 100% healthy, Allen has proven to be the favorite of both the coaching staff and QB Andrew Luck but Fleener still cuts into his snaps and targets. He’s the better blocker, more explosive athlete, has better hands, and most importantly gets more red zone targets than Fleener. Allen had 8 TDs in just 29 catches last season. That ratio is unsustainable, but if he can stay healthy all year, Allen could put up top 10 TE stats in 2015.

12.) Zach Ertz, Eagles – He was on all of my sleeper lists last season and I am still a huge fan of his talent despite a disappointing 2014. What I’m not a fan of is his groin injury, the vague timeline for his return, and the fact that even before his injury Ertz was listed as the 2nd team TE behind Chip Kelly favorite Brent Celek. In the Eagles high-octane offense, even a TE2 could put up valuable fantasy stats and Ertz should get his share of red zone looks. He has top-8 upside, but without a clear cut starting gig I can’t recommend Ertz as a fantasy starter in 12-team leagues.