- Travis Kelce is in a league of his own at the position, and the only question is how high to take him overall. I’m typically reluctant to draft a tight end early since you only need to fill one slot in your roster, and most of the teams that you are competing against likely aren’t happy with their tight ends either. But if we can get anything approaching Kelce’s 2020 season again, he’s worth a pick anywhere from 10-20 overall. Kelce scored a gigantic 313 PPR points and has scored at least 254 points in each of the last three seasons. The only other tight ends that have had even one season that good over the past three seasons are George Kittle, Darren Waller, and a 2018 season from Zach Ertz that feels like a lifetime ago.
- Darren Waller‘s 145 targets actually tied Kelce on the year, and Waller was one of just five tight ends that topped 100 targets. Waller is a rare volume threat at the position, and while I would be reluctant to take him in the first three rounds of drafts, I’d start strongly considering him in the fourth round, especially in PPR leagues.
- Once the top three tight ends are gone, I’d play the waiting game and make sure to grab the best value from tier 3. Some may put Mark Andrews in tier 2, but the volume just isn’t there in the Ravens passing game, and Andrews is often the recipient of highly contested passes. Andrews led all tight ends in contested targets with 26 and contested catches with 17. While he’s good at hauling those passes in, the offense isn’t scheming him open nearly enough, and with less than 100 targets for yet another season, Andrews becomes touchdown-dependent. Even with 7 touchdowns in 2020, his 12.2 PPR points per game were still significantly below the top three at the position.
- The rest of the tier 3 tight ends are up in the air with questionable quarterback situations, outside of Robert Tonyan. This order will change as we get more information, but there is some talent in this tier and some values may present themselves. For now, don’t get too caught up on any one player and take the value as it falls. Logan Thomas comes in at TE11 despite a 110 target season — if he got an above-average quarterback somehow, he could be a steal in early drafts.
|19||Irv Smith Jr.||MIN||4|