2012 Fantasy Football Week 4: Tight Ends (TE) Rankings/Projections

Sean E. DouglasSenior Writer IIISeptember 26, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 23:   Kyle Rudolph #82 of the Minnesota Vikings rolls in the end zone on a touchdown while  Donte Whitner #31 of the San Francisco 49ers looks to the referee at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome on September 23, 2012 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)
Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

He's only got 18 targets on the season, but Kyle Rudolph is starting to emerge as one of the trusted options from the Vikings in fantasy leagues. Rudolph posted five receptions against the 49ers, two of them going for touchdowns. On the season, Rudolph has three scores and has been an active part of Minnesota’s game plan.

The Vikings will head out to Detroit for a big division matchup against the struggling Lions. Over the past two weeks, the Lions have coughed up three touchdowns to opposing tight ends, making Rudolph a nice option for fantasy lineups this week.

Expect a high-scoring affair in this one, as the Lions will be desperate not to fall to a 1-3 record to start the season.


What Did We Learn From Week 3?

One of the all-time greats, Tony Gonzalez, is going to be a start-worthy tight end until the day he retires.

One of my favorite tight ends from the 2010 class, Dennis Pitta, appears ready to perform as a fantasy-relevant option. Joe Flacco is looking his way often, and Pitta is starting to carve a niche out as a red-zone target, with two touchdowns on the young season.

I’m ready to bail on any hopes of Kellen Davis becoming a TE1 option with the Bears' continued struggles up front.


Sean’s Week 4 Watch List

It’s time for Antonio Gates to step up and start playing up to the level we expect. The Chargers lost, and when that happens a coaching staff looks to its key players and asks, “Why aren’t we getting so and so the football more?”

Playing in an all-important division game, look for Gates to be targeted often. If not, it’s time to be a little concerned about his usage in the offense, and perhaps we would need to bench him until he starts performing.

Coming off a knee injury in the preseason, Jermaine Gresham has had a slow start to the season, but he caught five passes last week and found the end zone. Let’s see if Gresham can keep it going against the Jaguars, or will he lose out on valuable targets to the Bengals' emerging young receiving corps.

1 Jimmy Graham at Packers
2 Rob Gronkowski at Bills
3 Vernon Davis at Jets
4 Tony Gonzalez Panthers
5 Brandon Pettigrew Vikings
6 Kyle Rudolph at Lions
7 Antonio Gates at Chiefs
8 Jermichael Finley Saints
9 Brent Celek Giants
10 Dennis Pitta Browns
11 Martellus Bennett at Eagles
12 Jason Witten Bears
13 Jacob Tamme Raiders
14 Scott Chandler Patriots
15 Fred Davis at Bucs
16 Jermaine Gresham at Jaguars
17 Jared Cook at Texans
18 Greg Olsen at Falcons
19 Owen Daniels Titans
20 Marcedes Lewis Bengals

Week 4 Standard Rankings – QB | RB | WR | Waivers | Start / Sit |