Monday, August 20, 2012

Fantasy Football: 2012 Tight End Projections

This year’s tight end fantasy draft class includes two elite players who could easily serve as your team’s top fantasy receiver. The rest of the tight end class is filled with good, but not great talent.    
According to ESPN's average draft position (ADP) data, once the top two tight ends are off the board, owners are waiting three rounds before drafting the number three ranked tight end. That type of statistical disparity should tell you to wait on a tight end if you miss out on one of the top two guys.         

The list below is projections based on standard scoring* fantasy leagues and risk and upside.

Free printable cheat sheets: Position rankings // Top 200  

1) Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints
There were high hopes from Graham entering 2011. But nobody expected him to explode like he did. His 11 touchdowns and 1,310 receiving yards made him a fantasy superstar this season. When you're Drew Brees' top target, you get a spot in the top 20. Projected fantasy points: 196

2) Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots
After scoring 17 touchdowns last season, Gronkowski will be in high demand in 2012. While the addition of Brandon Lloyd and the emergence of Aaron Hernandez will hurt Gronk’s numbers, he still should put together a solid season. Projected fantasy points: 192

3) Jermichael Finley, Green Bay Packers
With a brand new 2-year contract signed, Finley can focus on football. He has the potential to be one of the top tight ends in the league, but too often loses focus and disappears during games. Finley has also had issues with dropped passes, something that was evident in the NFC playoff game against the Giants. A solid offseason of work should help Finley improve his numbers in 2012. Projected fantasy points: 133

4) Aaron Hernandez, New England Patriots
The third-year tight end finished 2011 on a role, scoring four touchdowns in the final six games of the season, including the playoffs. Hernandez's versatility makes him a valuable fantasy prospect. Projected fantasy points: 127

5) Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys
Whitten had his worst statistical season in five years in 2011. While his numbers were still solid, 79 receptions for 942 yards and five touchdowns, one has to wonder if he's on the downswing of his career. Still, Whitten, who turns 30 this offseason, is a reliable player who you can count on being on the field every week. Projected fantasy points: 126

6) Vernon Davis, San Francisco 49ers
Davis was terrific for the Niners late last season, including the playoffs. He is a match-up nightmare for defenses and should be helped by the additions to San Francisco's offense (Mario Manningham, Randy Moss). However, be prepared for some off weeks from Davis. Projected fantasy points: 123

7) Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers
Gates will be entering his tenth NFL season this year and one has to wonder how much he has left. Gates managed to catch 64 passes for 778 yards and seven touchdowns, but he missed three games with a lingering foot injury. Gates' career is clearly on the downswing, however he proved last season that even at less than 100 percent he's still not a bad option. Projected fantasy points: 122

8) Fred Davis, Washington Redskins Projected fantasy points: 113

9) Brandon Pettigrew, Detroit Lions Projected fantasy points: 107

10t) Dustin Keller, New York Jets Projected fantasy points: 107

10t) Brent Celek, Philadelphia Eagles Projected fantasy points: 107

12) Tony Gonzalez, Atlanta Falcons
Just when it looked like Gonzalez was slowing down, he catches 80 passes for 875 yards and seven touchdowns in 2011. He has already said he's coming back next year, which should be his last. If history is any indicator, you can pencil in Gonzalez for at least 70 receptions, 700 yards and 5-7 touchdowns. Not bad for a 36-year-old. Projected fantasy points: 105

13) Jermaine Gresham. Cincinnati Bengals Projected fantasy points: 103

14) Jared Cook, Tennessee Titans Projected fantasy points: 99

15) Jacob Tamme, Denver Broncos Projected fantasy points: 97

16) Coby Fleener, Indianapolis Colts Projected fantasy points: 93

17) Kyle Rudolph, Minnesota Vikings Projected fantasy points: 90

18) Martellus Bennett, New York Giants Projected fantasy points: 89

19) Kellen Winslow, Seattle Seahawks Projected fantasy points: 88

20) Owen Daniels, Houston Texans Projected fantasy points: 87

21) Heath Miller, Pittsburgh Steelers Projected fantasy points: 84          

22) Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers Projected fantasy points: 81

23t) Ed Dickson, Baltimore Ravens Projected fantasy points: 68

23t) Dennis Pitta, Baltimore Ravens Projected fantasy points: 68

25) Lance Kendricks, St. Louis Rams Projected fantasy points: 62

*Standard scoring:
·       10 receiving yards = 1pt.
·       TD reception = 1 pt.
·       10 rushing yards = 1pt.
·       TD rush = 6 pts.

1 comment:

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