Are your favorite Fantasy TEs already off the board? Here’s a gift for you.
I look at the amount of attention given to Rob Gronkowski even in his retirement and see the amount of disrespect given to the active Fantasy TEs in this game. Rob, we appreciate the love you have shown the game and the off-field antics of wrestling peers in nightclubs after getting jacked up on energy drinks. Oh, let us not forget about that pornstar who you hung out with on the regular. See, there I go focusing on Gronk. Focus Jermaine, focus!
Yes, a Boomer Sooner…
There are still exciting Fantasy TEs in this game even if they’re not body-slamming their friends off the field. There are different tiers of TEs, and while the Kelce/Kittle tier is extremely exciting, and they are likely to be the next beasts in the game, let me focus on a sleeper. This former Sooner should be considered in fantasy as well as the game in general. That sleeper is Mark Andrews.
All that glitter ain’t gold…
“Sure, Jermaine you’re such a homer!” First of all, watch your mouth! Second of all, hear me out. There are Fantasy TEs like Zach Ertz and Evan Engram who currently look very appealing when it comes to the position. Engram because the G-Men are going through a “Murphy’s Law” type of season, where everything can go wrong will. And Ertz because he put up over 1000-yards and 8-TDs last season. Anyone getting 156 looks a season will most certainly raise eyebrows considering future production. BUTTTTTT!!!!!! Yes, a big “but.” DeSean Jackson is about to eat into Engram’s workload in the 2019 season being that he is back in Philly. Not to mention “BDN” Nick Foles has taken his services to Jacksonville, so we have no idea who is going to be the main target in Philly under Carson Wentz again.
Now, back to the lecture at hand…
Let me get back to Andrews. We saw last season when Lamar Jackson was truly on his game, it was either Willie Snead he was targeting or Mark Andrews. Mark had 34-receptions with over 552-yards and 3-TDs. Before week 9, the rookie TE was averaging 27 yards a game. But when Lamar took over, he managed to get an uptick of 44-yards per game. While these numbers are not Kittle type numbers, in the fantasy world, adding a TD every other game with an uptick in receptions to those numbers could mean the difference between being in the playoffs or looking from the outside in. Even the Athletic’s top Ravens writer Jeff Zrebiec had this to say about the 6-4 254-pounder.
“With the Ravens not having a whole lot at receiver, Andrews could realistically see 70-plus targets after getting 50 in 2018.”
From my perspective of watching football, the QBs not named Tom Brady, who tend to struggle early in their careers in the passing game tend to lean heavily on their TEs as more of their security blanket. Take Cam Newton for instance. We know Cam’s arm motion is not natural and even Kelvin Benjamin (as bitter as he was about life) spoke some truth about the Panthers’ signal-caller and his arm talent.
— Nick Carboni (@NickCarboniWCNC) August 4, 2018
This inaccuracy is why he threw to big targets like Benjamin and Greg Olsen. Another example of a great TE with a terrible signal-caller is Todd Heap and Kyle Boller. Heap set TE receiving records (5496-yds and 41-TDs) in Baltimore, and he did it with not one but two mediocre QBs in Kyle and Joe Flacco.
It’s not just Baltimore with this problem, look at Bernie Kosar outside of his 1988 season. Tony Romo rode Jason Witten his entire career. I’m sure Cowboy Nation just got all tight about me saying that but oh well. TEs help up and coming QBs or even the ones that can’t seem to make the leap to (and I hate to say this word) elite status.
When you’re looking at your fantasy draft boards in the upcoming weeks and see the flashy Fantasy TEs pop off the board, have confidence that there is a sleeper who will produce big in the 2019 season and recognize that I’ve already said: “you’re welcome.”