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Week 10 Tight End Analysis

This week 10 tight end analysis article will explore the difference between expert consensus rankings (ECR) and projected PPR stats (both as per www.fantasypros.com). I’ll also offer my insight on their weekly match-up, along with whether or not they can beat their weekly projection.

 

Tight Ends exceeding PPR Projections

Top 15 Rank#: 1. Rob Gronkowski (NE) at DEN (31st ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 16.00

Fresh off his bye week, Gronk has had some time to rest his myriad of minor injuries. He has a dream match-up in week 10, facing a Denver defense that allows 17.4 PPR points per game to the position. Gronk has been a red-zone machine as of late, catching three touchdowns in his last three games. Denver was just drilled by Philadelphia in week 9, where Philly put up four passing touchdowns against the Broncos. Chris Hogan is likely not playing week 9 with a shoulder injury, further helping Gronk’s projections. He should be in for a big day against the Broncos.

My Projected Points: 17.00 (5 receptions, 60 yards, 1 TD)

Top 15 Rank#: 2. Evan Engram (NYG) at SF (5th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 14.40

Engram had another solid week, catching 4-of-10 targets for 70 yards and a touchdown in week 9 against a tough Rams defense. He continues to be a focal point of the Giants’ offense, and the return of Sterling Sheppard helped to clear up coverage underneath for him. San Francisco typically plays tight ends well, but have unraveled as of late, allowing a touchdown to a TE in their last 3 games. Given that Engram is the primary read in the red zone for the Giants, I like his chances of scoring again this week. Engram may not have a huge yardage day but can beat his projections with red zone targets.

My Projected Points: 15.00 (4 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD)

Top 15 Rank#: 3. Jimmy Graham (SEA) vs ARI (15th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 11.40

Graham had a solid week 9 against the Redskins, catching 5-of-8 targets for 59 yards. Graham has secured his role as the clear-cut #2 passing read option, after Doug Baldwin. It is worthy to note the Graham was sidelined at Tuesday’s practice, given that he plays on a short week (Thursday game vs Arizona). Graham has caught at least 3 passes in all but one game this year, so we have a decent PPR floor established for him. If he plays, I like his chances to repeat an output similar to week 9. Arizona allows around 11.7 PPR points per game to the position, which is very similar to Graham’s average output. Look for Graham to stay involved, but monitor his practice participation this week.

My Projected Points: 11.50 (5 receptions, 65 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 4. Jack Doyle (IND) vs PIT (4th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 11.80

Doyle continues to show impressive rapport with Jacoby Brissett and has become one of the primary reads in this offense. In week 9 against Houston, he caught 8-of-9 targets for 63 yards. Doyle will likely not gain huge amounts of yardage but catches many short to intermediate routes. He has developed into a safety valve for Brissett and has 20 catches for 184 yards over the last two weeks. He has a tough match-up against Pittsburgh this week, who allow an average of 10.3 PPR points per game to tight ends. However, most of Doyle’s PPR value will come from his receptions, so I think he has a great chance of beating his projections this week once again.

My Projected Points: 13.00 (7 receptions, 60 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 5. Kyle Rudolph (MIN) at WAS (28th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 10.30

Rudolph is coming off his week 9 bye and draws the terrible Washington Redskins TE defense in week 10. Rudolph has at least seven targets in the last 4 games, establishing his role in the Minnesota attack. It’s also important to note that Rudolph retained his target share even after the return of Stefon Diggs in week 8, showing that he will likely remain involved going forward. Washington allows 16.9 PPR points per game to tight ends, the highest average in the league. Look for Rudolph to have a solid PPR day with limited yardage, and a decent shot at a touchdown.

My Projected Points: 14.00 (4 catches, 40 yards, 1 TD)

Top 15 Rank#: 6. Cameron Brate (TB) vs NYJ (27th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 9.50

Brate had an awful week 9, catching 1-of-4 targets for nine yards against the New Orleans Saints. Brate’s production was severely limited by Jameis Winston and his shoulder injury, and Jameis is already ruled out for this week. Brate has shown a decent rapport with backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, as he tends to prefer shorter routes due to his limited arm strength. Brate has a good match-up for week 10 as well, as he faces the New York Jets, who allow 14.6 PPR points per game to tight ends. The Jets have allowed exactly six receptions to tight ends in their last five games, so Brate owners only have to worry about OJ Howard stealing some targets. I think Brate beats his projections this week, but OJ Howard may steal his red zone targets.

My Projected Points: 10.00 (5 receptions, 50 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 7. Delanie Walker (TEN) vs CIN (9th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 10.40

Walker played week 9 despite being questionable with an ankle injury, and did very well, catching 5-of-5 targets for 71 yards against the Ravens. He is likely going to be limited in practices this week again but will have time to rest his ankle and suit up for this Sunday’s tilt against the Bengals. The Bengals allow only 11.2 PPR points per game to the tight end but have given up the 15th most yards to tight ends. The Bengals have allowed only two touchdowns to TE thus far this year. Walker is going to have to rely on making his projection with screen throws underneath, which is exactly how he was used in week 9. I think Walker remains heavily involved against the Bengals, but I wouldn’t assume he scores this week.

My Projected Points: 11.00 (5 receptions, 60 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 11. Vernon Davis (WAS) vs MIN (12th ranked TE defense). Projected Points: 7.30

Davis had a great week 9 in the absence of Jordan Reed, catching 6-of-9 targets for 72 yards against the Seahawks. He has at least 58 yards in five of his last six games. Davis will be a solid PPR option if Jordan Reed is forced to miss more time with a hamstring injury. His production will vary heavily on the practice participation of Reed throughout the week, but I’m going to assume Reed sits or plays in a limited fashion. Minnesota hasn’t played a strong TE option yet this year, and Davis may surprise them with underneath routes.

My Projected Points: 8.50 (4 receptions, 45 yards)

Tight Ends below PPR Projections

Top 15 Rank#: 8. Austin Seferian-Jenkins (NYJ) at TB (6th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 10.60

ASJ caught 2-of-2 targets for 20 yards against the Bills, which was his worst game of the season. However, for the second straight game, he had a touchdown called back by a questionable penalty. It’s great to see his continued red zone involvement, but his lack of targets has to be concerning for owners. This week, he faces the Buccaneers, who allow the fewest points to the position at a rate of 9.8 PPR points per game. ASJ has been held under 30 yards in the last three games, and only has 12 targets over that span. This week, I don’t think he fares well against the Bucs unless he gets back into the end zone.

My Projected Points: 8.00 (4 receptions, 40 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 9. Hunter Henry (LAC) at JAC (18th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 8.90

Henry had a disappointing week 8, catching 2-of-2 targets for just 11 yards. The result was disappointing, given his increased usage in the previous four games before that (24 targets, 14 receptions, 221 yards, 2 TDs). Coming off his week 9 bye, he faces a stiff test in the Jaguars, who have the best secondary in the league. The Jags have been slightly more susceptible to TE compared to WR/RB, but still only allow 12.4 PPR points per game to tight ends. It’s hard to predict Henry’s usage this season, but given the strength of the Jags secondary, I’m more willing to put Henry under his projections for the week.

My Projected Points: 8.00 (4 receptions, 40 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 10. Jason Witten (DAL) at ATL (3rd ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 10.10

Witten caught his single target in week 9 for 5 yards, continuing a bizarre season for the 35-year-old. Witten has been targeted more than 5 times in a game only once since week 2, and cannot be relied upon in the red zone. The Falcons boast one of the best TE defenses in the league, allowing 9.7 PPR points per week to tight ends. Furthermore, they’ve only allowed one TE touchdown this year. I don’t think Witten stays involved, especially is Zeke ends up playing this Sunday. If Zeke sits, look for Witten to improve his usage, but I still don’t think he beats his projections.

My Projected Points: 8.50 (4 receptions, 45 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 12. Tyler Kroft (CIN) at TEN (13th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 9.20

Kroft caught 2-of-2 targets for 79 yards in week 9, including a 59-yard grab. Kroft turned into the #1 option after AJ Green was ejected, but Green should be returning in week 10. Tennessee allows 12.2 PPR points per week, and we’re just blown up by the Ravens and Benjamin Watson for 10 catches for 70 yards. However, Kroft will likely fall to the #2 read in this run-heavy offense, and AJ Green may get a lot of looks against a softer Titans secondary.

My Projected Points: 8.50 (4 receptions, 45 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 13. Austin Hooper (ATL) vs DAL (10th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 8.30

Hooper caught 3-of-6 targets for 36 yards in week 9 against the Panthers. Hooper is a borderline TE1, as he’s received at least 6 targets in 4 of his last 5 games. He hasn’t gone over 50 yards since week 1 and plays a tough opponent in the Cowboys in week 10. Other than Travis Kelce in week 9, the Cowboys have played tight ends very well, allowing an average of 11.3 PPR points/game to TE. He has some streamer appeal, but I wouldn’t expect him to exceed 50 yards or 3 receptions on the day.

My Projected Points: 7.50 (3 receptions, 45 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 14. Eric Ebron (DET) vs CLE (29th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 7.40

Ebron finds himself in the top 15 ranks as a virtue of playing the Browns in week 10, who have one of the worst TE defenses in the league. Ebron has some serious streamer appeal, as the Browns have allowed six touchdowns to TE in their last eight games. Ebron only has one touchdown on the year, which came in week 2, so he’s really just a touchdown or bust option. Ebron hasn’t had more than five catches in a game this year, so it’s tough to predict his output. Use him as a desperate stream for a touchdown, but I wouldn’t count on his involvement this week.

My Projected Points: 7.00 (3 receptions, 40 yards)

Top 15 Rank#: 15. Charles Clay (BUF) vs NO (8th ranked TE defense). Projected PPR Points: 9.30

Charles Clay is practicing Monday on a limited basis, after missing the last four weeks with knee surgery. He was playing well prior to his injury, but with the addition of Kelvin Benjamin, I see no reason for the Bills to hurry back Clay. Facing a tough New Orleans defense, Clay is a good candidate for future production, but may not be a great streamer in his first week back. He is a good stash and hold candidate, however.

My Projected Points: 5.00 (2 receptions, 30 yards)

 

Season Projection Record: 82-53-0 (60.8%)

Accountant by trade, I enjoy stats and numbers far more than anyone ever should. Despite being born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, I’ve somehow become a Dallas Cowboys fan (praise Romo). While I love all fantasy sports, fantasy football is my favorite. Twitter @TFA_Andrew

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