Burkardt’s Preseason Fantasy Football Rankings: Tight Ends

by Skyler Burkardt
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Fantasy football season is just around the corner. Over the next few weeks, I will share my top-10 rankings for each position to help give you an edge and possibly determine who should be drafted in your fantasy leagues this season. We are on to tight ends.

Tight Ends

1. Travis Kelce  – Kansas City Chiefs

With Tyreek Hill out for a length of time (yet to be determined) expect to see an uptick in yardage for Kelce. As Mahomes’ best weapon on the field, he can force a defense into a double-team consistently. Don’t hesitate to let Kelce be the first tight end off your board with no questions asked.

2. George Kittle – San Francisco 49ers

Don’t sleep on taking Kittle early in your fantasy league. Kittle will put up even better fantasy numbers now that he has a fully healthy Jimmy Garoppolo. Kittle also has every chance to dethrone Kelce as the number one fantasy tight end. Reach for him if you have the opportunity because he’s going to act as a third wide receiver in your tight end spot.

3. Zach Ertz – Philadelphia Eagles

Ertz will once again have an outstanding fantasy year as long as Wentz stays healthy. He is the center of this offense as the Eagles have struggled to find a real weapon at wide receiver outside of Alshon Jeffrey. Be ready this year as many people will take tight ends early to make their rosters elite.

4. O.J. Howard – Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bruce Arians is going to get Howard the ball often as he has emerged as an incredible asset to the Buccaneers passing game. Howard could easily be the next Jimmy Graham in this offense, and you won’t want to pass him up.

5. Hunter Henry – Los Angeles Chargers

Coming off a significant injury last year many will be skeptical on drafting him high. Don’t be afraid to as Rivers will look to target him often and make the Chargers offense even more deadly outside of Tyrell Williams and Keenan Allen.

6. Eric Ebron – Indianapolis Colts

Ebron seemed to bust the Colts passing game wide open last year and turned heads after a slow start to his career in Detroit. Don’t sleep on him this year because he’s going to do the same thing and possibly compete for a top-three spot among tight ends if Andrew Luck favors him.

7. David Njoku – Cleveland Browns

There are plenty of mouths to feed on this Browns offense, and a significant portion of it could be going to this young tight end. Njoku proved to be a valuable asset to this offense late last year and will grow his on-field connection with Baker Mayfield after another offseason. Look for him to put up consistent numbers now that there is a pure speedster on the field in Odell Beckham Jr.

8. Jared Cook – New Orleans Saints

Cook is rated this low on the list because it’s hard to tell how much damage he can do with an aging Drew Brees. Brees had his lowest passing yardage year last year, and that sends a red flag to fantasy owners. It is unknown how many targets Cook will accumulate after Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas. This could help Brees numbers or lessen Cook’s value as there are plenty of mouths to feed on this Saints team.

9. Noah Fant – Denver Broncos 

Denver is going to love having a weapon like Fant on its team. Whether it’s Joe Flacco or Drew Lock throwing the ball, he is going to be a threat. Flacco is known for favoring his tight ends as well.  As long as the former Raven is on the field, we will see Fant get plenty of targets in the passing game. Fant also could quietly sneak into the top-five in fantasy if all goes well.

10. T. J. Hockenson – Detroit Lions

Finally a favorite of mine on this list! Hockenson can do it all, and he will be an elite talent on the Lions as Matthew Stafford will have a great weapon to use every down as he did with Calvin Johnson. Hockenson has the potential to go anywhere on this list depending on how the Lions use him. Be on the lookout for his stock to rise as the season goes on.
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