The tight end position is littered with banged-up options as well as many disappointments. With those in mind, who has risen to become top options? Let’s take a look:
- Tony Gonzalez – Atlanta Falcons – vs. Oakland
- Vernon Davis – San Francisco 49ers – vs. New York Giants
- Jason Witten – Dallas Cowboys – at Baltimore
- Rob Gronkowski – New England Patriots – at Seattle
- Aaron Hernandez – New England Patriots – at Seattle
- Brent Celek – Philadelphia Eagles – vs. Detroit
- Heath Miller – Pittsburgh Steelers – at Tennessee
- Kyle Rudolph – Minnesota Vikings – at Washington
- Owen Daniels – Houston Texans – vs. Green Bay
- Dennis Pitta – Baltimore Ravens – vs. Dallas
- Fred Davis – Washington Redskins – vs. Minnesota
- Jermichael Finley – Green Bay Packers – at Houston
- Jermaine Gresham – Cincinnati Bengals – at Cleveland
- Brandon Pettigrew – Detroit Lions – at Philadelphia
- Jared Cook – Tennessee Titans – vs. Pittsburgh
- Martellus Bennett – New York Giants – at San Francisco
- Antonio Gates – San Diego Chargers – vs. Denver
- Zach Miller – Seattle Seahawks – vs. New England
- Scott Chandler – Buffalo Bills – at Arizona
- Jacob Tamme – Denver Broncos – at San Diego
- Anthony Fasano – Miami Dolphins – vs. St. Louis
- Coby Fleener – Indianapolis Colts – at New York Jets
- Joel Dressen – Denver Broncos – at San Diego
- Brandon Myers – Oakland Raiders – at Atlanta
- Dwayne Allen – Indianapolis Colts – at New York Jets
Gronkowski could see his role scaled back a bit, given his reported hip injury, especially with Aaron Hernandez likely to return in Week 6. He actually has been surprisingly hit-or-miss, with 35 yards or less (and no TDs) in two of his past three games. At this point, it is impossible to have him sitting atop the rankings.
Would anyone have really expected Tony Gonzalez to be sitting atop the rankings at any point in 2012? He just continues to get the job done, with 39 receptions (13 for 123 yards and a TD in Week 5) for 388 yards and four TDs. There’s no questioning that he is going to play a significant role in the team’s new passing approach. With a favorable matchup against the Raiders, he should be in store for another big week.
Week 4 was Jason Witten’s “return” performance, with 13 receptions for 112 yards and a TD. He should continue to play a major role in the Cowboys' passing attack and should simply build on this performance.
The Tennessee Titans have been burned by tight ends week after week after week. This week it is Heath Miller’s turn, who has been a focus of the Steelers in the red zone. While his value is mostly tied to his ability to score TD, it’s a pretty good bet that he gets there this week.
Has the time really come when Antonio Gates is not viewed as a TE1? He’s played in four games this season and hasn’t had more than four receptions, hasn’t scored a TD and only once has been above 43 yards (he had 59 in Week 4). At this point, there are definitely more promising options out there, though given his upside I would still hold out hope that Gates gets on track.
Joel Dressen, Jacob Tamme
Joel Dressen or Jacob Tamme? The problem is, without the number of targets the Patriots’ tight end duo get, there likely aren’t enough chances to go around. It’s going to be hit-or-miss on which one makes the impact, so it’s a situation you may want to avoid.
Injured Tight Ends
Both Jermichael Finley and Martellus Bennett came out of Week 5 banged up. We’ll have to keep a close eye on the news to see if they are going to be at full strength or not. The same can be said for the Jets’ Dustin Keller, who remained out in Week 5. If he plays, he’s a TE2
Is Zach Miller returning to fantasy viability? He had three receptions for 59 yards in Week 5 and will likely be called upon heavily in Week 6 against the Patriots. The Seahawks are going to want to try and keep the ball out of Tom Brady’s hands, so utilizing the running game and a short passing game makes sense.
Make sure to check out all of our Week 6 rankings: