Chicago Bears: Cole Kmet is a potential TE fantasy football breakout

Chicago Bears (Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports)
Chicago Bears (Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Chicago Bears, Cole Kmet
Chicago Bears (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /

Cole Kmet: The shift from the Chicago Bears veteran to the rookie

In typical rookie tight end fashion, Cole Kmet did not see a ton of action early on and sat behind veteran Jimmy Graham. Kmet did not see three or more targets until Week 10, which paints the picture of his involvement. Jimmy Graham was the starter the first 12 weeks of the season in which he was the TE13 during that time. It was not until Week 13 when a clear shift in the TE roles occurred in Kmet’s favor.

Cole Kmet finished the year as the TE41 for fantasy football, but once his role was expanded he was the TE20 Weeks 13-17. During those 5 weeks, Kmet averaged six targets a game with one of those weeks being an eight target week. Kmet’s snap percentage took a huge jump during this span as well, which was a solid sign since the shift was not due to an injury to Jimmy Graham.

With the Bears being a team that was playoff-bound in 2020, the fact that they gave the keys to the TE role to the rookie was a huge sign for the following year. If the narrative was that Jimmy Graham kept his job the entire year, the optimism for Kmet’s second season would be a different story. The signs point towards a rookie who learned from a veteran, took the snaps away from the veteran and is geared up for a bigger role in the coming year.