- Hunter Henry feels a bit slept on as the TE14 this week according to expert consensus rankings. Henry was touchdown-dependent last year, scoring nine touchdowns compared to just 603 receiving yards last year. And we would like to have seen his snap share higher than a mediocre 67%. But his average target distance was the third highest among all tight ends, and his 12 endzone targets were the second most among all tight ends last year. Once we get past the top eight tight ends we are looking to spike a touchdown anyway, and Henry’s touchdown upside gives him a path to higher upside than others in his range of rankings. Take Cole Kmet for example, who draws a tough matchup against a 49ers’ defense that gave up the third-fewest receiving yards to tight ends last season. In a game where the Bears will likely struggle to score points, Kmet has a higher floor at the very low levels of production, as seen in the graph below, but for any realistic ceiling, Henry is the better option.
- Gerald Everett‘s role in the Chargers offense is far from certain, but we can say the same for several other tight ends ranked above him this week, like Albert Okwuegbunam and Irv Smith Jr., for example. Everett did sit out the preseason with the starters, an encouraging sign for his playing time, and gets a nice matchup right off the bat. The Raiders gave up the fifth-most fantasy points to tight ends last year and this Week 1 matchup projects as a shootout. Once we get past TE12 this week, we have to start making assumptions about playing time. Everett at least finds himself in a profitable matchup and playing with Justin Herbert, a combination I’ll take my chances with.
Green=Strong Starter, Yellow=Solid Starter, Red=Look for Better Options