Dustin Keller: A Lot of Questions, but Great Upside for Fantasy Football Teams!

William Del PilarContributor IAugust 21, 2009

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 14:  Dustin Keller #81 of the New York Jets  warms up against the St. Louis Rams during their preseason game at Giants Stadium on August 14, 2009  in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

Another tight end who makes a great No. 2, or if you want to gamble a bit, your No. 1, is the New York Jets' Dustin Keller. His average draft position is right around pick 125, Round 11 in a 12-team league.

That allows you to focus on another running back, a wide receiver or even a quality No. 2 quarterback earlier in your draft. Remember, it’s not necessarily about getting the highest producing tight end as much as getting a quality tight end.


  • He is similar in style to Dallas Clark, a proven fantasy tight end.
  • Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer is not afraid to pass.
  • Keller is one of the few tight ends who can stretch the field.
  • In Weeks 10 to 17 he had 35 receptions for 388 yards — 4.4 receptions and 49 yards per game.
  • The team cut Laveranues Coles, effectively making Keller the No. 2 option behind Jerricho Cotchery.
  • He posted 48 receptions for 553 yards and three touchdowns despite starting only six games.
  • He saw six targets inside the 5-yard line.
  • He will play a prominent role this season.
  • In Weeks 10 to 13 he had 27 receptions – 6.8 receptions and 78 yards per game. 


  • There are massive questions at the quarterback position, which lead to questions about whether the Jets will have a consistent passing attack.
  • Keller is inconsistent and in Weeks 14 through 16 had only six receptions, 51 yards and zero touchdowns.
  • There is no quality depth, and Keller may be wear down as the season progresses.


My projections (There is a high/low range, but I just want to present the raw numbers):

  • Receptions: 66
  • Receiving yards: 772
  • Receiving touchdowns: 5

The differences between a Keller and, say, a Chris Cooley are the serious questions at the quarterback position and the fact that Cooley is proven whereas Keller is not. Don’t assume similar projections means equality in value. You want someone who’s proven and consistent and has fewer questions with the team surrounding him. Those are the issues with Keller. 

What are your thoughts? Agree or disagree?

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