Separating the Names from the Numbers: TE Edition

I’ve always been a firm believer that, when it comes to fantasy, the tight end position is Gronk, Kelce, Ertz, and everybody else. Those are the guys that are going to get you elite production, and the rest are probably going to be week-to-week crapshoots where you hope for a touchdown, maybe double-digit points, and pray for the best.

The gap in a PPR league from TE1 (Kelce) to TE4 (Delanie Walker) was 59 points.

The gap in a PPR league from Walker to TE18 (Charles Clay) was 57.7 points.

That stat alone is telling enough to show you how much of a difference having one of the elite guys would give you over the course of the year.

So when we go through this exercise of separating names from numbers like we’ve done for quarterbacks, running backs, and wide receivers already, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that some random names here and there.

Let’s dive in, but not until I remind you that in no way, shape or form am I telling that one player is better than the other or that you should draft one player instead of the other. Just simply taking names away from numbers here, guys, and not advocating for any action to be taken after that.

—–

Tight End A:

  • 61 Receptions
  • 522 Receiving Yards
  • 8.6 YPR
  • 32.6 Receiving Yards/Game
  • 4 Touchdowns

Tight End B:

  • 57 Receptions
  • 520 Receiving Yards
  • 9.1 YPR
  • 32.5 Receiving Yards/Game
  • 10 Touchdowns

If the last number for tight end B isn’t telling enough for who we’re looking at here, you should probably get your pulse checked since everyone and their mother knows that Jimmy Graham led TEs in touchdowns this year.

But tight end A? That’s Big Benny Watson.

Take the touchdowns out of the equation, and you’re looking at similar replacement value here.

Jimmy Graham saw more than double the amount of red zone targets than Watson did (29 to 14) and led the league in red zone targets, which undoubtedly led to his large uptick in touchdowns.

—–

Tight End A:

  • 53 Receptions
  • 574 Receiving Yards
  • 10.8 YPR
  • 35.9 Receiving Yards/Game
  • 4 Touchdowns

Tight End B:

  • 49 Receptions
  • 558 Receiving Yards
  • 11.4 YPR
  • 42.9 Receiving Yards/Game
  • 2 Touchdowns

Similar numbers yes, but Charles Clay (tight end B) put up these numbers in three less games than Eric Ebron (tight end A) did.

Listen – I’m a Lions fan though and through. I know, I know. You can’t tell me anything that hasn’t already been said to me.

And I’d like to think that Eric Ebron is a good, productive tight end.

But he’s not, and I don’t think he ever will be (at least in Detroit).

Charles Clay was a target in an offense that was all LeSean McCoy, all the time, and he still put up similar numbers to Ebron! In three less games!

I’m probably biased, but you couldn’t give me Eric Ebron on any of my teams going forward.

—–

Tight End A:

  • 33 Receptions
  • 395 Receiving Yards
  • 12 YPR
  • 24.7 Receiving Yards/Game
  • 1 Touchdown

Tight End B:

  • 32 Receptions
  • 386 Receiving Yards
  • 12.1 YPR
  • 24.1 Receiving Yards/Game
  • 4 Touchdowns

I saved my favorite for last here. Any guesses?

Both played for teams that had QB issues.

Both played for teams that really couldn’t get anything going on offense in general.

Both played for the Cleveland Browns.

Tight end A is second-year TE Seth DeValve, and tight end B is highly-coveted rookie TE David Njoku.

Everyone knows that tight ends could take a year or two to broach fantasy relevancy, so I’m not saying that DeValve is going to be a better asset to have next year than Njoku.

However, sometimes TE2s can have decent floor upside. Look at what Cameron Brate and OJ Howard did last year.

If both continue to develop, it can only mean good things for an offense that really can only get better next year.

——

There you have it. Which numbers are the most surprising to you?

Eric Mally is a featured blogger for the Loaded Box Podcast.  Check out his article archive and find more from the Loaded Box on Twitter & Facebook

2 thoughts on “Separating the Names from the Numbers: TE Edition

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