Fantasy Football Rankings 2012, Week 1: Tight Ends In Standard & PPR Leagues

SAN DIEGO - SEPTEMBER 19: Quarterback Philip Rivers #17 and tight end Antonio Gates #85 of the San Diego Chargers celebrate a Charger touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Qualcomm Stadium on September 19 2010 in San Diego California. The Chargers won 38-13. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

Everybody wants to get their 2012 fantasy seasons off with a W. No better way then to pay careful attention to the TE position: a spot that is very often overlooked by owners, and can mean the difference between winning and losing. Not sure who to start? Catch my weekly rankings, kick back with a beer, and enjoy fantasy domination!

Below are my week 1 TE rankings for both Standard and PPR leagues. Note that these rankings are not in any way related to what my year-long predictions will be for the position. It takes into account a number of weekly factors such as injuries, opponent, offensive game plan, and likely targets.

Standard League

PPR League

1

Jimmy Graham

Jimmy Graham

2

Rob Gronkowski

Antonio Gates

3

Antonio Gates

Rob Gronkowski

4

Aaron Hernandez

Vernon Davis

5

Vernon Davis

Aaron Hernandez

6

Fred Davis

Fred Davis

7

Jermichael Finley

Jermichael Finley

8

Tony Gonzalez

Jared Cook

9

Jared Cook

Tony Gonzalez

10

Brandon Pettigrew

Coby Fleener

11

Brent Celek

Brandon Pettigrew

12

Coby Fleener

Brent Celek

13

Greg Olsen

Greg Olsen

14

Owen Daniels

Owen Daniels

15

Jacob Tamme

Jacob Tamme

16

Dustin Keller

Ed Dickson

17

Martellus Bennett

Dustin Keller

18

Ed Dickson

Martellus Bennett

19

Jermaine Gresham

Jermaine Gresham

20

Kyle Rudolph

Kyle Rudolph

Notes:

  • Antonio Gates is going to have a monster game this week, especially in PPR leagues. The Chargers are taking on a woeful Oakland Raiders defense and Philip Rivers will be slinging the ball all over the field. Without a top reliable wide receiver option, Rivers will look early and often to his always reliable, and finally healthy tight end.
  • There is going to be a shootout in the Bayou. We all know what kind of points the Saints can put up, but last season they were also the third-worst team against the pass. Robert Griffin III and the Redskins will be throwing the ball all over the field and Fred Davis stands to have a big game. He is one of the few serious weapons that the Skins have in the passing game. Over the course of the season, Davis should be close to a top 10 tight end, but this week he will be in top five territory.
  • Similar thoughts for Jared Cook in his matchup with the porous New England secondary. Cook is a virtual lock to put up at least 60 yards and a touchdown with rookie quarterback Jake Locker. Cook will be inconsistent all season, but I expect week 1 to be a good one.
  • Coby Fleener will have a solid game in quarterback Andrew Luck's pro debut. Chicago will pressure Luck and force him to dump the ball off quickly. Luck has a comfort level with Fleener and won't hesitate to get him the ball when the blitz pressure gets there. Fleener especially has value in PPR leagues as he should total around 6 catches for 65 yards.
  • I don't quite know what to think of Brent Celek yet. Last year really was a tale of two halves. He was a legit fantasy contributor in the second half, but was a total non-factor through Week 8. He is a player I will be watching closely to see if his ranking goes up or down. For now I am staying conservative and keeping him out of the top-10.
  • Many experts have put Jacob Tamme on their pre-season TE sleeper lists. I think Tamme will have a nice season as Peyton's security blanket but I just don't see him having a good week against the Steelers. There might be a buy-low opportunity with Tamme if he starts the season slowly

For more fantasy info, check out the SB Nation Fantasy War Room 4-8pm ET Monday through Friday and 8am to 1pm on Sunday. Check out SB Nation's own Fantasy Football game, Pick 6!

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