Week 16 Rankings (2017): Top 20 Tight Ends

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Tight end has been one of the more frustrating positions to fill all season long, so why would we expect championship week to be any different?  The return of Greg Olsen has definitely helped add to the depth of trustworthy options, but there continues to be questions up and down the board and with your title hanging in the balance those are further magnified.  Who should we trust?  Who should we ignore?  Let’s take a look:

  1. Rob Gronkowski – New England Patriots – vs. Buffalo
  2. Travis Kelce – Kansas City Chiefs – vs. Miami
  3. Zach Ertz – Philadelphia Eagles – vs. Oakland
  4. Eric Engram – New York Giants – at Arizona
  5. Delanie Walker – Tennessee Titans – vs. Los Angeles Rams
  6. Greg Olsen – Carolina Panthers – vs. Tampa Bay
  7. Eric Ebron – Detroit Lions – at Cincinnati
  8. Kyle Rudolph – Minnesota Vikings – at Green Bay
  9. Jack Doyle – Indianapolis Colts – at Baltimore
  10. Ricky Seals-Jones – Arizona Cardinals – vs. New York Giants
  11. Charles Clay – Buffalo Bills – at New England
  12. Hunter Henry – Los Angeles Chargers – at New York Jets
  13. Jimmy Graham – Seattle Seahawks – at Dallas
  14. O.J. Howard – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – at Carolina
  15. Vernon Davis – Washington Redskins – vs. Denver
  16. Jason Witten – Dallas Cowboys – vs. Seattle
  17. Austin Hooper – Atlanta Falcons – at New Orleans
  18. Benjamin Watson – Baltimore Ravens – vs. Indianapolis
  19. Jared Cook – Oakland Raiders – at Philadelphia
  20. Austin Seferian-Jenkins – New York Jets – vs. Los Angeles Chargers

Thoughts:

  • Welcome back Greg Olsen, who exploded for 9 catches, 116 yards and 1 TD in Week 15 against the Packers.  The matchup with Tampa Bay is not an easy one this week, but when healthy he is one of those players who you slot into your lineup regardless of the opponent.  Coming off this type of performance, is there reason for doubt?
  • Eric Ebron doesn’t often get a lot of attention, but over the past two weeks he’s been targeted 18 times (15 receptions, 127 yards, 1 TD).  It’s hard not to think that there’s upside against the Bengals, who have allowed TD to opponents in back-to-back weeks (in Week 14 Adam Sheehan & Dion Sims combined for 6 receptions, 76 yards and 1 TD).
  • After it looked like Kyle Rudolph would miss Week 15, he ultimately played and scored a TD for the fourth straight game (5 TD total over this stretch).  He hasn’t been putting up monster numbers though (he hasn’t had more than 63 yards in a game all season long) and the last time he faced Green Bay he managed 5 catches for 47 yards.  He’s a TD dependent option, and when coupled with the injury he’s hard to consider a must use.
  • As quickly as Jimmy Graham rose to a viable option, he’s completely disappeared.  Over the past two weeks he’s totaled 1 catch for -1 yard, being targeted a total of 5 times.  Maybe he rebounds in a favorable matchup?  Perhaps, but with your fantasy title hanging in the balance that’s not something you want to depend on.
  • While the splash of Ricky Seals-Jones appears to be a distant memory, he belongs on radars again this week with a matchup against the Giants.  It’s more likely that a TE finds the end zone than he doesn’t against New York, making Seals-Jones this week’s best potential streamer.

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Week 16 Rankings (2017): Top 50 Wide Receivers
Week 16 Rankings (2017): Top 40 Running Backs

17 comments

  1. Nonie says:

    Hey Prof. Given the matchup, would you start Eric Ebron over Jack Doyle in standard? I have more faith in Stafford as a passer but Doyle is a favored target of Brissett. Thank you

  2. darrick says:

    hey professsor, would you start both olsen and walker as your flex in a ppr league. this is my team k.hunt, alex collins, joe mixon, jamaal williams and my wr’s thielen, byrant, woods, diggs, j.gordon and dede westbrook

  3. OtisP says:

    Professor, I have been running with Jimmy Graham all year but am seriously considering picking up Eric Ebron of the waiver wire for this week. I am worried of over thinking this but given Graham’s past two weeks is it completely out of line to lean towards starting Ebron this week?

  4. Kim says:

    Hi Prof,

    Who would you play from this group?

    Gates @ NYJ

    J.James @ Houston

    Clay @ NE.

    I’m leaning toward James bc of the match up (which is golden) and AB is out so more targets his way. Clay’s match-up kindof scares me-NE good vs TE this year but he should get some targets too. No Henry so Gates should be the starter but has lost a step or two however Rivers looks his way in the end zone area. These are my thoughts, now yours, please…… :)

    Thank you for ALL of your advice. Happy New Year!!!!

  5. Sdavm says:

    I’m in a year-long PPR league where we have two conferences (16 total teams/8 teams each) so two teams can have some of the same players. I’ve made the playoffs and the team I’m playing is playing Greg Olsen at TE. I have Greg Olsen too but I also have Travis Kelce. My question is, would it be smarter for me to match my opponent and also play Greg Olsen to minimize the risk of being killed by a huge game from Olsen (as he had last week)and try to win with my other players where I do think I have the advantage, or should I roll the dice and hope that Kelce lives up to the performance everyone expects him to have?

    • Kelce has a much higher upside and that’s the direction I would go. If you wanted to play it safe, thinking that you have the advantage in other areas, the play makes sense. It’s risky, though, because you never really know if there will be injuries etc. limiting the other options

  6. haggy says:

    Ertz or Olson.

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