Are you looking for a tight end that may not be on your league mates radar? Here are three guys that have the potential to be fantasy gold mines either on draft day or off the waiver wire:
Kyle Rudolph – Minnesota Vikings
We’ve already spoken about him individually (click here to view), so I won’t go into too much detail here. The bottom line with Rudolph is that as the 2011 season progressed he became a bigger and bigger threat in the red zone, scoring all three of his touchdowns in the final seven games. At 6’6” and 258 lbs., you would think that he is a prime candidate to develop into a go to guy inside the 20 yard line.
Throw in the departure of Visanthe Shiancoe, and Rudolph should be in line to start for the Vikings and get plenty of opportunities to thrive. Remember Shiancoe was forth on the Vikings in receptions (36) and yards (409) a year ago and those opportunities have to go somewhere.
Of all the possible breakouts at the tight end position, Rudolph may have the best opportunity to thrive. Obviously a healthy Adrian Peterson could cut him down a little bit, but you have to expect the Vikings to limit Peterson to keep him on the field all year long.
Jordan Cameron – Cleveland Browns
His name is going to become more and more popular as the preseason goes on as he has been getting an opportunity to play with the first team offense thanks to the injury to Evan Moore. While Cameron isn’t going to overtake Benjamin Watson, that doesn’t mean he isn’t going to get ample opportunities to produce.
It’s not like the Browns have Pro Bowl wide receivers, with Greg Little, Mohamed Massaquoi and Joshua Cribbs leading the way. In other words, if you can make plays and produce you are going to get an opportunity and Cameron could force the team to go with more two tight end sets.
In fact, head coach Pat Shurmur was recently quoted by Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal (click here for the article) as saying:
“I think he needs to get lots of reps in the preseason games, and he will,” Shurmur said. “He’ll be a guy that can play the Y [receiver position] or the tight end position and then also the second tight end position in two-tight end sets. He’ll play quite a bit in the preseason for sure.”
He’s a former college basketball player and is said to have a lot of athleticism. Keep a close eye on him as he continues to get opportunities to produce. With the team’s lack of weapons, don’t be surprised that if he produces in the preseason he becomes a significant factor in the passing game. As a low-end option, that has to be music to owner’s ears.
Kellen Davis – Chicago Bears
Mike Martz more or less handcuffed Davis a year ago, as Martz’ passing attack never features a tight end very much. As we head into 2012, Davis could be primed for a much better campaign.
Standing at 6’7”, Davis already has proven to be a threat in the end zone as he led the Bears with 5 TD a year ago. Considering he had next to no role in the offense (only 18 receptions), that’s impressive. Imagine what he can do if Jay Cutler and company are actually trying to get him involved on a regular basis?