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2011 Player Rankings: Tight Ends
Updated: September 8, 2011   Print this page Print 
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Tier 1
Jason Witten - DAL YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 1
Keeper: 1
Auction 10: 12%
Auction 12: 13%
2008 DAL 16 81 952 11.8 4      
2009 DAL 16 94 1030 11.0 2      
2010 DAL 16 94 1002 10.7 9      
Avg   16 90 995 11.2 5 0 0 0
Proj DAL   94 1010   8      

Witten comes off back-to-back years of exactly 94 catches and around 1000 yards but he increased his touchdown total to a career best nine after only logging two in 2009. Some of that comes from Jon Kitna playing and Witten had only caught 6 scores over the two previous years. Witten remains the receiver of choice in the end zone.

Jermichael Finley - FA* YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 2
Keeper: 4
Auction 10: 12%
Auction 12: 12%
2008 GBP 14 6 74 12.3 1      
2009 GBP 13 55 676 12.3 5      
2010 GBP 5 21 301 14.3 1      
Avg   11 27 350 13.0 2 0 0 0
Proj FA*   70 820   8      

Finley was well on his way to cementing himself as an elite fantasy tight end when a torn meniscus in Week 5 prematurely ended his season. Indications are he's back to full speed and will re-assume his role as Aaron Rodgers' favorite target. Though you'd like to see him in a preseason game to feel better about his recovery, there's enough upside to make him a top-five fantasy TE sight unseen.

Antonio Gates - SDC YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 3
Keeper: 5
Auction 10: 10%
Auction 12: 10%
2008 SDC 16 60 704 11.7 8      
2009 SDC 16 79 1157 14.6 8      
2010 SDC 10 50 782 15.6 10      
Avg   14 63 881 14.0 9 0 0 0
Proj SDC   68 820   8      

(-Risk) Antonio Gates was hampered by foot and leg injuries last season and he is starting training camp on the active/PUP list because he has still not completely recovered from his torn plantar fascia that forced him to miss six of the final eight games. He still racked up 782 yards and ten scores on just 50 catches - his lowest catch total since he was a rookie. Gates says that he will play this year and that "you won't know he is hurt" if his injury lingers. He may be placed on a snap count this year to lower his exposure and he has been the most prolific tight end over the last seven seasons. But he is a risk at 31 years of age and injuries that are slower to heal.

Vernon Davis - SFO YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 4
Keeper: 3
Auction 10: 10%
Auction 12: 10%
2008 SFO 16 31 358 11.5 2 1 11  
2009 SFO 16 78 965 12.4 13      
2010 SFO 16 56 914 16.3 7      
Avg   16 55 746 13.4 7 0 4 0
Proj SFO   70 820   8      

The new offense being installed by HC Jim Harbaugh and OC Greg Roman is expected to make big use of the tight end spot and that benefits Davis who is one of the best in the game. With a set of wideouts that still aspire to being just mediocre, Davis should see one of his best seasons in 2011. He remains an elite tight end.

Dallas Clark - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 5
Keeper: 2
Auction 10: 12%
Auction 12: 13%
Movement:
2008 IND 15 77 848 11.0 6      
2009 IND 16 100 1106 11.1 10 2 11  
2010 IND 6 37 347 9.4 3      
Avg   12 71 767 10.5 6 1 4 0
Proj FA   80 800   7      

Clark was lost to a wrist injury only six games into 2010 and that came on the heels of a career best 2009 that had him catching 100 passes for 1106 yards and ten scores. He remains Manning's favorite outlet and a lock for a decent season - if not a monster one. Expect a bounce back from last year.

Tier 2
Owen Daniels - BAL YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 6
Keeper: 7
Auction 10: 6%
Auction 12: 8%
2008 HOU 16 70 862 12.3 2      
2009 HOU 8 40 519 13.0 5      
2010 HOU 11 38 471 12.4 2      
Avg   12 49 617 12.6 3 0 0 0
Proj BAL   66 830   6      

Daniels signed a 4-year deal worth $22 million right before the lockout so you can be sure the Texans feel his knee is fine and that he can return to form. Daniels was sharp in the final four games of last year but he'll not likely be needed as much as his peak of 2008 thanks to the vastly improved rushing game.

Marcedes Lewis - JAC YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 7
Keeper: 6
Auction 10: 6%
Auction 12: 8%
2008 JAC 16 41 489 11.9 2      
2009 JAC 15 32 518 16.2 2      
2010 JAC 16 58 700 12.1 10      
Avg   16 44 569 13.4 5 0 0 0
Proj JAC   60 710   8      

Lewis was franchised this year as a sign of how important he has become to the team. He comes off a career best 58 receptions for 700 yards and ten touchdowns and while there is a chance that the rookie Blaine Gabbert takes over from David Garrard at some point this year, the role that Lewis plays should be unaffected. Rookie QBs usually love their tight ends and Lewis is a big component of the passing game.

Kellen Winslow - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 8
Keeper: 12
Auction 10: 6%
Auction 12: 8%
2008 CLE 10 43 428 10.0 3      
2009 TBB 16 77 884 11.5 5 1 7  
2010 TBB 16 66 730 11.1 5      
Avg   14 62 681 10.9 4 0 2 0
Proj FA   70 800   5      

(-Risk) Winslow enters his eighth season and while he finally had no surgeries in the offseason, he remains a perpetual risk because of his knees. He's settled down to back-to-back seasons of around 70 catches and 800 yards with five scores and that's his ceiling in this offense. A low end fantasy starter but a better backup to use.

Rob Gronkowski - NEP YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 9
Keeper: 8
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 4%
2008                  
2009                  
2010 NEP 16 42 546 13.0 10      
Avg   16 42 546 13.0 10 0 0 0
Proj NEP   45 560   8      

Gronkowski earned an extra $2 million in incentives as a rookie because no one writing the contract would have thought he would end with 10 receiving touchdowns. He scored at least once in almost half of his games but his yardage varied wildly week to week and rarely topped 50 yards. If he can increase his catch total, he'd be worthy of an every week start. The sharing scenario will continue with Hernandez but Gronkowski will be no worse than a great fantasy backup and could end up a starter.

Tony Gonzalez - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 10
Keeper: 18
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 4%
2008 KCC 16 96 1058 11.0 10      
2009 ATL 16 83 867 10.4 6      
2010 ATL 16 70 656 9.4 6      
Avg   16 83 860 10.3 7 0 0 0
Proj FA   62 620   6      

Gonzo returns for his 15th NFL season but he has been on the decline eery year since 2007 and ended last year with only 656 yards on 70 catches for six scores. That 9.4 YPC is the lowest of his career and marks a steady progression downward since 2006. Gonzo is still a part of the offense, but no longer a major part.

Tier 3
Greg Olsen - CAR YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 11
Keeper: 11
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2008 CHI 16 54 574 10.6 5      
2009 CHI 16 60 612 10.2 8      
2010 CHI 16 41 404 9.9 5      
Avg   16 52 530 10.2 6 0 0 0
Proj CAR   58 610   6      

(+Upside) Olsen could end up as a nice sleeper this year since he is already a big talent who was improving in Chicago until OC Mike Martz killed him off. Olsen had 612 yards on 60 catches and eight touchdowns in 2009. And now the Panthers have brought him in to be a part of the passing game. OC Rob Chudzinski was formerly TE coach in San Diego and will make use of the position. Jeremy Shockey is also on the roster but this rebuilding team with questionable receivers and green QBs will use tight ends in a big way.

Jimmy Graham - NOS YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 12
Keeper: 9
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2008                  
2009                  
2010 NOS 15 31 356 11.5 5 1 3  
Avg   15 31 356 11.5 5 1 3 0
Proj NOS   58 610   6      

(+Upside) As a rookie, Graham turned in 31 catches for 356 yards and five scores and he was steadily improving as the season progressed. His improvement was the reason why Jeremy Shockey was sent packing in the offseason. The Saints have always used at last two or more tight ends in their "spread it around" scheme but for the price, Graham is a sleeper type this year who should see more use in the red zone and see a healthy increase in catches this year.

Brandon Pettigrew - DET YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 13
Keeper: 10
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 2%
2008                  
2009 DET 11 30 346 11.5 2      
2010 DET 16 71 722 10.2 4      
Avg   14 51 534 10.9 3 0 0 0
Proj DET   72 720   4      

Tight ends always seem to thrive in a Scott Linehan offense, and Pettigrew did so to the nth degree last season. Deep threat Titus Young shouldn't take much off of Pettigrew's plate, so another season of solid numbers should be in store as Brandon enters his third year in the league--better than solid if he's able to box out fellow TE Tony Scheffler.

Ed Dickson - CAR YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 14
Keeper: 20
Auction 10: 2%
Auction 12: 2%
2008                  
2009                  
2010 BAL 15 11 152 13.8 1      
Avg   15 11 152 13.8 1 0 0 0
Proj CAR   42 560   6      

The Ravens must have faith in Dickson, as they let long-time tight end Todd Heap leave via free agency. Dickson had just two games with more than one catch during his rookie campaign, and he'll likely share some of the duties with fellow sophomore Dennis Pitta. But Cam Cameron's offense produces some work for tight ends, so Ed is in position to be a deep fantasy sleeper.

Jermaine Gresham - CIN YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 15
Keeper: 13
Auction 10: 2%
Auction 12: 2%
2008                  
2009                  
2010 CIN 15 52 471 9.1 4      
Avg   15 52 471 9.1 4 0 0 0
Proj CIN   64 620   5      

Gresham carved out 52-471-4 between TO and Ochocinco; now he'll be playing in a TE-friendly West Coast offense, flanked by an inexperienced group of wideouts. Even the prospect of a rookie quarterback shouldn't dampen expectations of Gresham stepping up his productivity in 2011.

Ben Watson - NOS YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 16
Keeper: 14
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 NEP 14 22 209 9.5 2      
2009 NEP 16 29 404 13.9 5      
2010 CLE 16 68 763 11.2 3 1 -1  
Avg   15 40 459 11.5 3 0 0 0
Proj NOS   60 640   4      

Watson established career highs in catches and yardage in his first season in Cleveland, and the Browns' move to a tight end-friendly West Coast offense certainly won't hurt his opportunities. He may have to cede snaps to rookie Jordan Cameron, however, and athletic Evan Moore horned in on his action last year as well. Watson's career year was a fringe fantasy contributor; don't overpay expecting more.

Chris Cooley - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 17
Keeper: 19
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 WAS 16 83 849 10.2 1      
2009 WAS 7 29 332 11.4 2      
2010 WAS 16 77 849 11.0 3      
Avg   13 63 677 10.9 2 0 0 0
Proj FA   60 580   5      

(-Risk) Cooley played with a torn meniscus for all of last year but he still turned in 77 catches for 849 yards and three scores and kept Fred Davis as an afterthought. Cooley should end up as the leading scorer among receivers yet again. Cooley has basically had the same sort of season for the past six years so he is consistent, reliable and has already found his ceiling.

08-12-11 Update: Cooley will still miss a few weeks of camp because of his left knee that had surgery last winter and yet still needs to be drained. Cooley is one to avoid.

Heath Miller - PIT YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 18
Keeper: 22
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 PIT 14 48 514 10.7 3      
2009 PIT 16 76 789 10.4 6      
2010 PIT 14 42 512 12.2 2      
Avg   15 55 605 11.1 4 0 0 0
Proj PIT   50 590   4      

An inconsistent fantasy contributor who's been downright unhelpful two of the past three seasons, Miller is most effective in best ball formats where you don't need to guess when his touchdowns will come. Unless undrafted free agent Weslye Saunders emerges, however, Miller won't be pushed for playing time--so he's got that going for him, which is nice.

Tier 4
Aaron Hernandez - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 19
Keeper: 15
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008                  
2009                  
2010 NEP 14 45 563 12.5 6 3 47  
Avg   14 45 563 12.5 6 3 47 0
Proj FA   40 500   5      

Hernandez required hip surgery after the season ended but has made a full recovery. The rookie was a surprise in catching 45 passes for 563 yards and six scores and along with Gronkowski made the league's deadliest tight end combo last year. His inconsistency keeps him from being a fantasy starter, but he's only entering his second season.

Lance Kendricks - STL YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 20
Keeper: 16
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008                  
2009                  
2010                  
Avg   0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Proj STL   42 500   5      

(+Upside) The Rams have high expectations for their 2.15 pick in the draft. Kendricks is a field stretching tight end with great hands who will fit nicely into the new scheme being installed by OC Josh McDaniels. In player led practices in the spring and summer, Kendricks was very impressive to his teammates and has spawned high expectations of him.

Zach Miller - SEA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 21
Keeper: 17
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 OAK 16 56 778 13.9 1      
2009 OAK 15 66 805 12.2 3      
2010 OAK 15 60 685 11.4 5      
Avg   15 61 756 12.5 3 0 0 0
Proj SEA   52 540   4      

Miller is certain to be re-signed by the Raiders since he led the team in receptions (60), receiving yards (685) and receving touchdowns (5). And that was after he missed the first two games. Miller is an integral part of the offense thanks in no small part to the sad state of wideouts that the Raiders are determined to never address. He is the only player that Campbell can connect with regularly and in every game.

08-02-11 Update: Surprise! Al Davis whiffs big-time on this one, allowing their best receiver to leave. Seattle will not use him as much either but the move is good for Miller.

Jared Cook - STL YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 22
Keeper: 23
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008                  
2009 TEN 14 9 74 8.2        
2010 TEN 16 29 361 12.4 1      
Avg   15 19 218 10.3 1 0 0 0
Proj STL   48 510   4      

(+Upside) The new offense is being installed and that always goes slowly. What is common is that tight ends show up more in the early stages until the wideouts and quarterback get on the same page. Cook has been practicing as a receiving tight end and could surprise this season. He only had 29 catches for 361 yards in his second season and could be poised for a nice increase. He's definitely worth grabbing as a backup tight end to see what develops.

Brent Celek - PHI YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 23
Keeper: 25
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 PHI 16 27 318 11.8 1      
2009 PHI 16 76 971 12.8 8      
2010 PHI 16 42 511 12.2 4      
Avg   16 48 600 12.3 4 0 0 0
Proj PHI   45 500   4      

After a breakout 2009 season, Celek saw his production drop in half with the addition of Michael Vick and he also battled various injuries all season. But Celek had only one game with more than 4 catches and seven of his final 11 games only turned in two or fewer receptions. He's nothing more than a decent backup tight end with Vick under center.

Fred Davis - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 24
Keeper: 21
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 WAS 11 3 27 9.0   1 -3  
2009 WAS 16 48 509 10.6 6      
2010 WAS 16 21 316 15.0 3      
Avg   14 24 284 11.5 3 0 0 0
Proj FA   50 510   3      

The #2 in Washington still, Davis has slimmed down in the offseason to make himself faster and a better receiver but he'll remain in the shadow of Chris Cooley barring an injury. Davis is not worth drafting in all but the biggest of leagues but is a must have if Cooley is hurt and cannot play. Davis is as talented as most if not an under-used potential star but stuck behind the Skins all-time leader for tight ends. Watch early season games to see if the lackluster wideouts and quarterbacking forces more throws to the tight ends and makes Davis a marginal fantasy starter.

08-11-11 Update: Have to like Davis more with the news that Chris Cooley is still bothered by his knee.

Anthony Fasano - KCC YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 25
Keeper: 27
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 MIA 16 34 454 13.4 7      
2009 MIA 14 31 339 10.9 2      
2010 MIA 15 39 528 13.5 4      
Avg   15 35 440 12.6 4 0 0 0
Proj KCC   39 480   3      

The Fins signed Fasano to a two-year extention worth $7.75 million and he comes off a career best season of 528 yards and four scores almost entirely from Chad Henne. Fasano is not likely to develop into a true fantasy starter since his ceiling has likely been met, but he makes a great fantasy backup who is good for at least 30 yards in almost every game.

Dustin Keller - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 26
Keeper: 28
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 NYJ 16 48 535 11.1 3      
2009 NYJ 16 45 522 11.6 2 1 7  
2010 NYJ 16 55 687 12.5 5      
Avg   16 49 581 11.7 3 0 2 0
Proj FA   45 510   2      

Keller ended up with a career best 687 yards last year but most of that came early in the season. His role diminished in most games down the stretch and into the playoffs as the Jets went to a more heavy run-oriented offense. Keller never scored after week four last season and his yardage is rarely more than 30 or 40 yards per game. He's just a fantasy backup.

Michael Hoomanawanui - NEP YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 27
Keeper: 26
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008                  
2009                  
2010 STL 8 13 146 11.2 3      
Avg   8 13 146 11.2 3 0 0 0
Proj NEP   32 360   4      

(+Upside) The promising rookie suffered ankle problems last year and only played in 8 games with 13 catches for 146 yards and three scores. Hoomanawanui showed nice chemistry with Sam Bradford in the preseason and has spent his spring and summer working on strengthening his ankles. This offense will spread the ball around and incoming OC Josh McDaniels at least made use of the position when he was with the Patriots. Too early to expect much here but there is upside to be sure. The Rams also drafted Lance Kendricks who is another great receiving tight end. The two should decrease each others numbers.

Visanthe Shiancoe - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 28
Keeper: 29
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 MIN 16 42 596 14.2 7      
2009 MIN 16 56 566 10.1 11      
2010 MIN 16 47 530 11.3 2      
Avg   16 48 564 11.9 7 0 0 0
Proj FA   44 450   2      

Shiancoe lost his role as a red-zone favorite to Percy Harvin, and now he'll battle second-round pick Kyle Rudolph for looks as the Vikings use more two-TE looks. Donovan McNabb has demonstrated a fondness for throwing to tight ends, but if Rudolph sees as much playing time as expected Shiancoe's numbers are bound to fall off.

Kevin Boss - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 29
Keeper: 32
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 NYG 15 33 384 11.6 6      
2009 NYG 15 42 567 13.5 5 1 16  
2010 NYG 15 35 531 15.2 5      
Avg   15 37 494 13.4 5 0 5 0
Proj FA   35 380   3      

Boss enters training camp unsigned but is expected to remain with the Giants where his role as a blocker has been more critical. Boss has back-to-back seasons of around 500 yards and five scores which is his probable ceiling in this offense.

08-07-20 Update: Boss was traded to the Raiders but his fantasy stock still does not make him a starter.

Leonard Pope - FA YEAR TM GMS CAT CYD YPC CTD CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 30
Keeper: 31
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2008 ARI 13 9 77 8.6        
2009 KCC 13 20 174 8.7 1      
2010 KCC 16 10 76 7.6 2      
Avg   14 13 109 8.3 1 0 0 0
Proj FA   35 380   3      

No analysis available.

   
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