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Fantasy Football: Tight end target tiers and Week 2 rankings

  • Mark Andrews, Dalton Schultz, Dallas Goedert and Tyler Higbee were the only tight ends to run a route on at least 90% of their offense's dropbacks in Week 1.
  • Tyler Higbee and Gerald Everett stand out as the week’s top-two streaming options.
  • Juwan Johnson and Albert O are the biggest risers in the weekly ranks thanks to their more than solid underlying usage.
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Every year the fantasy football industry convinces itself that there are more viable late-round tight ends than ever. Also every year the community is forced to deal with the realization that depth charts that look wide open in August tend to close up in a hurry once September comes along.

Today’s goal: Establish which tight ends are even somewhat viable fantasy options at this point based on their Week 1 usage.


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History tells us that tight ends who run a route on at least 80% of their team’s dropbacks and manage to earn a target on at least 20% of their routes tend to put up massive fantasy numbers. These instances are few and far between; regardless we’re looking for tight ends who are:

  1. On the field almost all the time when their team is passing
  2. Good enough to command targets on at least a fifth or so of their routes

The following table denotes the snap rate, route rate and targets per route run rate from every team’s Week 1 tight end:

Overall, just 10 tight ends ran a route on at least 70% of their team’s dropbacks while also commanding a target on at least 15% of their routes:

Obviously, Higbee, Johnson and Okwuegbunam stand out as the three biggest surprises of the group. They are my top-three waiver wire additions of the week for anyone looking to fill that lineup spot. Check out the Tuesday edition of The PFF Fantasy Football Podcast for weekly waiver wire analysis.

Additionally, there are six other tight ends who qualify in terms of running a route on at least 70% of their offense’s dropbacks, but weren’t quite targeted enough to qualify in the above group: Dallas Goedert, Hunter Henry, Tyler Conklin, Cameron Brate, Hayden Hurst and Evan Engram. Each (especially Goedert and Hurst) are quality plays as well thanks to their established pass-game-friendly role.


Week 2 tight end notes:

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