Editor's update: Rob Gronkowski has since been downgraded to OUT with a hamstring injury. Martellus Bennett is arguably a top 5 TE in Week 1 for Jimmy Garoppolo.
With a majority of NFL offenses today geared more toward passing, the old-school blocking tight ends are harder than ever to find around the league. Most of today’s top tight ends line up more like receivers at the line of scrimmage rather than sticking their hands in the dirt.
Some football traditionalists may be complaining, but it would be hard to find any fantasy football owners upset about the increase in tight end production.
Last year was a big coming out party for a number of tight ends around the NFL. Players such as Gary Barnidge, Jordan Reed and Delanie Walker all set career highs in receptions in 2015 and established themselves as reliable fantasy tight ends week in and week out.
Then of course there is the old Mr. Reliable in Rob Gronkowski. In only six seasons in the league, the New England Patriots tight end has caught at least 10 touchdowns in all but one of his years in the NFL.
For this week, Barnidge figures to have a pretty favorable matchup when his Cleveland Browns face the Philadelphia Eagles. Barnidge was a huge part of the Browns’ offense in 2015 and figures to remain in a similar role with the team this season.
Given how much of an impact tight end Tyler Eifert made with the Cincinnati Bengals last year (13 touchdowns), his backups, Tyler Kroft and C.J. Uzomah, may be some interesting players to keep an eye on while Eifert heals from his ankle injury.
Tight ends, Week 1
(ZS: Zach Senvisky, JM: Jason Marcum, AP: Adam Patrick, SK: Scott Kaliska, JG: Jeff Goldberg, KB: Kyle Bennett)
|2||Jordan Reed||WAS||vs. PIT||2||2||2||2||2||2|
|3||Greg Olsen||CAR||at DEN||3||3||5||3||3||3|
|4||Travis Kelce||KC||vs. SD||4||4||6||4||4||4|
|5||Delanie Walker||TEN||vs. MIN||5||7||4||5||5||5|
|6||Gary Barnidge||CLE||at PHI||8||6||3||7||7||6|
|7||Coby Fleener||NO||vs. OAK||9||5||7||6||6||7|
|8||Antonio Gates||SD||at KC||7||11||8||10||8||11|
|9||Dwayne Allen||IND||vs. DET||10||10||9||11||9||8|
|10||Julius Thomas||JAC||vs. GB||6||12||12||9||10||10|
|11||Jason Witten||DAL||vs. NYG||11||8||11||12||12||12|
|12||Zach Ertz||PHI||vs. CLE||14||9||15||8||11||9|
|13||Jared Cook||GB||at JAC||12||14||10||13||14||13|
|14||Martellus Bennett||NE||at ARI||13||16||13||14||13||14|
|15||Eric Ebron||DET||at IND||17||13||18||16||16||16|
|16||Zach Miller||CHI||at HOU||15||24||23||18||15||18|
|17||Virgil Green||DEN||vs. CAR||24||18||14||22||17||19|
|18||Jesse James||PIT||at WAS||22||15||17||21||20||20|
|19||Kyle Rudolph||MIN||at TEN||16||22||16||23||19||23|
|20||Vance McDonald||SF||vs. LA||23||17||22||17||18||15|
|21||Charles Clay||BUF||at BAL||19||20||20||19||21||21|
|22||Clive Walford||OAK||at NO||20||22||19||15||23||17|
|23||Austin Seferian-Jenkins||TB||at ATL||18||19||21||20||22||22|
|24||Will Tye||NYG||at DAL||21||--||--||24||25||24|
|25||Jimmy Graham||SEA||vs. MIA||25||23||25||25||--||25|
|--||Josh Hill||NO||vs. OAK||--||--||24||--||24||--|
|--||Lance Kendricks||LA||at SF||--||25||--||--||--||--|