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Tight End Waiver Wire Pickups and Streamers - Week 5


There will not be a stampede of fantasy players searching for tight ends this week.

The Week 5 bye teams will not really kill any fantasy owners at the tight end position, as Detroit’s injured / inconsistent rookie T.J. Hockenson and Miami’s underwhelming Mike Gesicki are the two starting tight ends off. That does not mean that are not fantasy squads in the market for an upgrade, though.

The good news is many waiver wires are stocked with solid options whether you need a one-week stopgap or somebody to step in for a couple weeks until you make a trade. Without further ado, here are my tight end waiver wire picks for Week 5!

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TE Waiver Wire Options for Week 5

Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts – 33% owned

As long as T.Y. Hilton is out, Doyle will wield plenty of fantasy clout. Doyle was a target monster back in 2017 but had his 2018 campaign ruined by injuries and the acquisition of Eric Ebron, who quickly became the top tight end on the team. Now Doyle is fully healthy, Hilton is hurt and Ebron has struggled. Doyle was able to haul in a touchdown toss against Oakland and should be an above-average tight end play against Kansas City’s below-average pass defense this Sunday night.

Hilton’s quad injury seems like it could be a lingering problem for a few weeks, and Indianapolis is probably stuck with the worst receiving corps in the NFL currently due to Hilton and Devin Funchess’ injuries - so Doyle could be Jacoby Brissett’s top target for the near future. Thank goodness Doyle came out okay after almost getting decapitated by head hunter Vontaze Burfict this past Sunday.

Noah Fant, Denver Broncos – 34% owned

The 2019 first-rounder is making Broncos fans and fantasy players forget all about the lean years Denver had at tight end when Jake Butt, Jeff Heuerman, Virgil Green, A.J. Derby and Matt LaCosse were manning the position. Denver was as desperate for a tight end as a fire eater in a circus is in need of a breath mint.

Fant has had at least 29 receiving yards in each of his first four games as a pro, and in his most recent outing he made his first visit to the end zone. His value in dynasty and keeper leagues is higher than in year-to-year leagues because he has a brighter future than he has a productive present, but he can still be counted on for 25-40 yards per week and the occasional TD. Pick him up if you can hang onto to him for the next couple years and enjoy the fruits of his stats while he blossoms into a superstar.

Dawson Knox, Buffalo Bills – 19% owned

Before you pencil in the aforementioned Fant and Hockenson as the odds-on favorites to end up being the best rookie tight end in the NFL at season’s end, keep Knox in mind because he is more of a frontrunner than a longshot. The third-rounder from Ole Miss has a half-dozen receptions for 125 yards and a touchdown over his last two games, even though the QB play he has gotten from Josh Allen has been far from Tom Brady-like.

Buffalo’s upcoming schedule has a couple cream puffs on it, at least defensively. After a road game at Tennessee, the Bills host Miami, Philadelphia and Washington back-to-back-to-back. Knox will have some serious opportunities to pile up yardage and find the end zone in that foursome of contests. Knox has short-term appeal and long-term appeal if you are a fantasy player, and his worth will be even greater if Allen can play like an NFL quarterback.

 

Other Tight End Options

Ricky Seals-Jones, Cleveland Browns – 8% owned

It did not take long for Seals-Jones to supplant Demetrius Harris as Cleveland’s most productive tight end in the wake of David Njoku’s injuries. Seals-Jones had a trio of grabs for 84 yards against the tough Baltimore Ravens, including a 59-yard touchdown.  Seals-Jones is a catch-first, block-second tight end, so that bodes well for him, although he failed out of Arizona so he let’s hope this change of scenery does wonders for his fantasy value.

Jordan Akins, Houston Texans – 20% owned

Houston’s passing attack revolves around its receivers, but Akins is quietly carving out a nice niche for himself in the offense. The bulky tight end is averaging an impressive 15.1 yards per catch and has been averaging four targets per game over the past three weeks. Akins is only in his second season and could improve as the year goes on. His next game is against an Atlanta secondary that just made Marcus Mariota look like Joe Montana.

Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Rams – 16% owned

The Rams have two tight ends that are similar (Everett and Tyler Higbee) and run an offense that does not feature the tight ends. That said, Everett just had one of the best games of his young career, racking up five receptions for 44 yards and a touchdown against Tampa Bay. In 12 or 14-team leagues, Everett is worth a look, especially with several weeks’ worth of byes on the horizon.

Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 18% owned

It is painfully obvious that offensive mastermind Bruce Arians favors having his quarterbacks throw to wide receivers and not tight ends. Both Brate and O.J. Howard have slumped during the first quarter of the season, but after having only 25 receiving yards over his first three contests, Brate managed to piece together three catches for 36 yards and a score against the Los Angeles Rams. A precursor to bigger and better things, or a one-week wonder? You decide.

 

Don’t Forget About…

Chris Herndon IV, New York Jets – 35% owned

I am sure millions of fantasy players have probably forgotten about Herndon, although he is still rostered in one-third of fantasy leagues. New York’s suspended tight end will return in Week 6 and should be fresh when he comes back. He was second among rookie tight ends in receiving yards last season and should be able to pick up where he left off as long as Sam Darnold is back under center when Herndon suits up.

Lance Kendricks, Los Angeles Chargers – 1% owned

If the Chargers do not ask Antonio Gates to come back as an emergency stopgap two years in a row, veteran Kendricks will be in a prime position.  Injuries have knocked out Hunter Henry, Virgil Green and Sean Culkin, leaving Kendricks as the last tight end standing in Chargersville. This past Sunday he had a pair of catches for 37 yards. Just take it with a grain of salt since it came against possibly the worst team in the history of the NFL, the Miami Dolphins.

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