I am really excited to kick off our 2015 Fantasy Football Player Rankings with a position that can really give you a huge advantage towards winning your league. I’m talking about the ever evolving, reptillian shapeshifting and balance tipping Tight End position. There is no bigger scoring disparity among Top 5 players at any given position than at the TE slot. In PPR Full Point Scoring Formats the Top 5 FFB Tight Ends (Rob Gronkowski NE, Jimmy Graham NO, Antonio Gates SD, Greg Olsen CAR and Martellus Bennett CHI) all surpassed 200 points with Bennett at the bottom scoring 213. The #5 scoring WR, Emmanuel Sanders (293 points) did manage to out score Gronk (260 points) by 33. But the Gronkinator isn’t slotted against WR’s. He is going against the likes of Dwayne Allen or Delanie Walker. What I’m getting at here is that drafting the right TE is essential for your Fantasy Team.
In a PPR league where you go head-to-head with a different team each week all you really need to do is win match-ups. So let’s look at who we think will be the Top 5 TE Fantasy Players and look at why you should draft one of them. I’m not going to talk draft strategy right now. When you take your TE is just as important as who you end up actually drafting. We will start talking about more of this as Training Camp gets underway and we get closer to your draft date.
Like any good list we will work from the bottom up. The THF #5 2015 Fantasy Football Tight End:
# 5 Martellus Bennett – Chicago Bears
Bennett who finished last year a Top 5 should be the beneficiary of Brandon Marshall’s departure to the NYJ. Though I don’t foresee him matching his 90 Receptions from last year he will definitely get his. And get plenty. In Adam Gase’s new system look for Martellus Bennet to especially do well in the Red Zone. He is a safety net for the erratic Jay Cutler and every QB wishes they had this weapon to rely on. Prediction: 82 REC, 917 YDS and 9 TD
#4 Greg Olsen – Carolina Panthers
Olsen is coming off his best year as a Pro and it earned him a big new Contract (3 yrs $22.5 million). He is the model of consistency while getting better and better each year. At age 30 he should have a few good years left in him as at least a Top 10 TE and I think the Panthers are banking on that. Changes to the CAR WR Corps. really could mean big things for Greg Olsen. While Cam tries to get some chemistry with his WR’s look for Greg to come out fast and strong. He’ll be tested against the Defending NFC Champs in week 1. Prediction: 85 REC, 887 YDS and 5 TD
#3 Travis Kelce – Kansas City Chiefs
Travis Kelce has huge potential to be a Fantasy Football Star in the next few years. Now the he is the #1 TE on the Chiefs Depth Chart expect his numbers from last year to GROW. Gronk Jr. (not to sleight Kelce he actually might be the only NFL TE who can compare to Gronk physically) punishes little DB’s and makes the best LB think twice before challenging him. Alex Smith has shown in the past that he can utilize the TE well (see Vernon Davis 2009 13 TD) and make teams pay for doubling up WR’s. Travis Kelce should rise to elite TE status this season. Prediction: 75 REC, 923 YDS and 10 TD
#2 Jimmy Graham – Seattle Seahawks
If there is one thing that could really propel Graham’s teammate Russell Wilson into the next tier of Top QB’s it is having a black hole for a Red Zone target. Well, he just got himself one. Jimmy leaves New Orleans for the Pacific Northwest as an All-Time statistical leader in multiple Receiving categories. The two time reigning NFC Champions just got extremely dangerous not just on the Goal line but in the passing game in general. The knock on Graham is that he isn’t physical,
won’t can’t doesn’t block and is an injury liability. Boy isn’t he an absolute beast though?! Jimmy Graham is a game changer. Crazy he is only #2 on this list right? Prediction: 72 REC, 899 YDS and 11 TD
#1 Rob Gronkowski – New England Patriots
The scary thing about Rob Gronkowski is that he said this is the first time since his Rookie year coming into Training Camp healthy. He’s always had to play catch up. Gronk not only can run over his foe he is on the Receiving end of passes from one of the NFL’s all time greats in Tom Brady who does not seem to be doing anything but getting better. This is a no brainer. If you can get him you do it. Make it a point to mock draft and see where he is landing. I know. I know. We weren’t going to talk about strategy. This is the exception. There might not be a better season than 2015 to ensure you are the one benefiting from Gronk’s annihilation of his feeble opponents. Prediction: 89 REC, 1,143 YDS and 14 TD.
Tight End has just become one of the best positions to speculate about. Since they are becoming a feature in many different Offenses it’s an absolute that you get in the mix on a top TE. Here are some other TE’s that you can draft if you miss out on any of the above:
- Coby Fleener/Dwayne Allen – Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck. Enough said right? Julius Thomas – JAX, Jordan Cameron – MIA, Vernon Davis – SF, Zack Ertz – Philadelphia Eagles and Jason Whitten – DAL.
I did not cover every TE of course. I did thought place the Top 5 can’t miss players and some other great prospects. Tomorrow we will be looking at the RB position, Thursday WR and on Friday wrap up with the QB’s. Next week we will look at sleepers and rookies.
Remember to tweet your Fantasy Questions to @TheHometownFan I’ll be answering those as they come in.
*Predictions based on PPR Scoring Format