- Week 17
- Week 16
- Week 15
- Week 14
- Week 13
- Week 12
- Week 11
- Week 10
- Week 9
- Week 8
- Week 7
- Week 6
- Week 5
- Week 4
- Week 3
- Week 2
- Week 1
2016 TE Targets Week 17
It was all about Zach Ertz this week, who saw 16 targets. He caught 13 of them for 139 yards and two touchdowns. There were two other tight ends in double digit targets, Dennis Pitta and Kyle Rudolph. Pitta was the one who didn't find the end zone. Antonio Gates saw eight targets, and found the end zone against a tough Kansas City matchup, and could have had two if it wasn't for a dropped pass. Coby Fleener finished with an inefficient three catches on eight tar-gets, putting in a disappointing season in his first year with New Orleans. Jordan Reed came back this week, and saw six targets. He had been missing over the last few weeks with an injury.
2016 TE Targets Week 16
There were five tight ends who saw five targets this week — Antonio Gates, Travis Kelce, Greg Olsen, Dennis Pitta, and Charles Clay. Now Clay has put together a big stretch here in the last few weeks. Delanie Walker saw eight targets this week, alongside Will Tye. Jared Cook saw five targets, but the tight end continues to be an intriguing GPP option, and especially if Green Bay makes the playoffs. Coby Fleener saw just three targets this week, alongside Jimmy Graham. Fleener's numbers are expected, but Graham's targets have been lacking lately. Zach Ertz had a very down week after a ton of targets, and saw just two.
2016 TE Targets Week 15
Kyle Rudolph led the tight ends in targets this week, and was one of the higher scoring tight ends as well. Jared Cook, Ladarius Green, and Ryan Griffin were right behind him with eight. Charles Clay, Delanie Walker, and Erc Ebron finished with seven. Zach Ertz had six this week, so things cooled off just a tad for him in targets. Tyler Eifert was taken away this week, seeing just three targets. Dwayne Allen saw two targets to Jack Doyle's four, and Eric Swoope's three. Hunter Henry saw four targets, to Antonio Gates' two. Expect more passing usage with Melvin Gordon out.
2016 TE Targets Week 14
Do you think Carson Wentz likes his tight ends? Zach Ertz had 13 targets this week, while Trey Burton had 10. Ertz has been on a phenomenal run when it comes to targets of late. Antonio Gates, Kyle Rudolph, and Travis Kelce were some of the usual names up top. Jermain Gresham had seven targets this past week, and has been utilized a bit more of late. Coby Fleener saw just three targets this week, and was hardly even looked at when in comeback mode. Given that Michael Thomas was inactive hurts Fleener moving forward. You would have thought he'd get more looks.
2016 TE Targets Week 13
Ladarius Green and Dennis Pitta finished with 11 targets a piece this week, and were the top two scorers of any tight ends. Behind them was Cameron Brate, and Zach Ertz. We saw the correlation between leading target getters his week, and top fantasy performers. Ertz had a league leading 15 targets among tight ends, while Kyle Rudolph was the odd man out. He had 12 targets this week, but failed to make any noise on the fantasy front. Coby Fleener was back in action this week, getting seven targets. While Tyler Eifert found the end zone, his two targets was disappointing in a game where A.J. Green and Giovani Bernard were still missing.
2016 TE Targets Week 12
Travis Kelce led the tight ends this week in targets (15). There were four others with double digit targets, Jordan Reed, Tyler Eifert, Jermaine Gresham, and Kyle Rudolph. With A.J. Green out, Eifert is due for a tick up in targets. Rudolph and Reed are focal points, but the Gresham number was a bit odd. It may have been due to matchup, but he has seen more snaps lately. It was another week for Vance McDonald, who had eight targets against Miami. This is the fourth week in a row with seven or more targets. Rob Gronkowski and Martellus Bennett are injured, and may miss out on next week's game. This means more for the running backs and wideouts.
2016 TE Targets Week 11
Jared Cook led this week in targets for tight ends, tied with Zach Ertz. Yes, you read that right, Jared Cook. Both caught six passes, and had a touchdown. Travis Kelce was next in line with nine targets. He caught seven for 108 yards. No touchdown, but had the highest amount of receiving yards over any other tight end. With some injuries to Bills players, Charles Clay saw seven targets, yet was inefficient for just 23 yards. Vance McDonald, Lance Kendricks, and Jason Witten were a few others with seven targets. Zach Miller being done for the season will open up targers for Logan Paulsen.
2016 TE Targets Week 10
It was a big week for AFC South tight ends, well the two that played of course. Delanie Walker and Julius Thomas both saw double-digit targets, and were the only ones to do so among tight ends this week. The top four tight ends in targets this week all grabbed a touchdown. Antonio Gates and Kyle Rudolph were the others. The Sunday night game offered very little from two of the best tight ends in the league, as Rob Gronkowski and Jimmy Graham combined for just ten targets. Jordan Reed was another elite tight end to just see four targets this week.
2016 TE Targets Week 9
Jason Witten torched the Browns this week, posting an 8-134-1 line. He saw ten targets, as a few old guys turned back the clock this week. Antonio Gates was the other, who saw nine targets and saw a touchdown. Lance Kendricks, Richard Rodgers, and Jack Doyle were a few other names up top in targets. I wasn't expecting quite the numbers they got, but they got the job done. For the first time this season Zach Ertz had eight targets, as he has been low for most of the season. Despite being ejected, Travis Kelce saw seven targets. With Nick Foles under center, he seems more a part of the offense.
2016 TE Targets Week 8
With the overtime game in London, Jordan Reed and Tyler Eifert saw 12 and 13 targets. Each found the end zone and racked up nine catches. Travis Kelce, Zach Miller, and Eric Ebron all saw ten targets this week. Ebron and Kelce have to be the most surprising given how inconsistent targets have been for them this season. Kelce might be opened up a bit more in the offense if Nick Foles starts. Cameron Brate, Delanie Walker, and Jimmy Graham were some notable tight end names to see only five targets this week. Walker and Graham took a step back from their Week 7 performances.
2016 TE Targets Week 7
Rob Gronkowski needed just four targets to rack up 100 receiving yards and a touchdown. It took a while for him to get going, but he ended up paying off come the end of the game. Kyle Rudolph led the league in tight end targets this week with 11. However, he only caught five for 55 yards. It was a Jack Doyle week, catching ten targets with Dwayne Allen out. This should be continue as long as Allen is out, and the efficiency continues to be very solid. Dennis Pitta and Antonio Gates also had ten targets, yet weren't as effective. A few tight ends rebounded from some down weeks, as Julius Thomas and Delanie Walker both saw 7 or more targets. Both caught touchdowns as well. With Jordan Reed out, Vernon Davis logged most of the snaps, and caught all six of his targets. Davis will continue to be a streamer as long as Reed is out, which seems to be another week. This is the third week in a row that Zach Ertz had just three targets, and has disappeared in the offense since returning from injury. Coby Fleener was another one, who had a tough matchup against Kansas City. It was a lot of the wideouts to pick up the most slack, but Fleener had just two targets, and the snaps were down as well.
2016 TE Targets Week 6
Dennis Pitta and Zach Miller tied this week in targets for tight ends with 10. Pitta was going to be a guy targeted heavily with Steve Smith out, and Mike Wallace banged up. Miller continues to be used heavily by Brian Hoyer. I don't believe Jay Cutler is going to see the field anytime soon, so Miller will be a solid option for volume. It was a Rob Gronkowski week, who was a mismatch against the Bengals. Gronkowski had nine targets, which led to 162 receiving yards and a touchdown. Jimmy Graham failed to get to 100 yards this week, but the nine targets is still pretty solid. That's what we want for consistency with Graham. Antonio Gates had six targets this week, but it seems that Hunter Henry has involved himself as being the number one wide receiver. He had eight targets and found the end zone. Greg Olsen and Coby Fleener both had seven targets this week, although Fleener had a rushing and receiving touchdown. Yes, you read that right. It has been back-to-back weeks with Zach Ertz having three targets. We might be walking into a bit of inconsistency. Travis Kelce was another big name tight end with just three targets.
2016 TE Targets Week 5
Greg Olsen had a monster week under Derek Anderson, as we the trend of bad quarterbacks relying on their tight end. He had 13 targets, and caught nine of them. Olsen has been a reliable option in the target department no matter who is under center. Jordan Reed sitting at 11 isn't surprising, with him being the number one option for Kirk Cousins. The first game with Tom Brady was a success for Martellus Bennett. The numbers were pretty split with him and Robert Gronkowski. Gronk had seven targets, and Bennett had eight. Jesse James had a big role this week with eight targets, but with so many weapons, this won't be a consistent number. Delanie Walker has been having snap count issues, playing around 50%, but having eight targets is right where we want him. It was a down week in targets for Kyle Rudolph, just with four. A bit of a downer given Stefon Diggs was out. He should have no issues going forward. Zach Ertz being targeted three times was also disappointing for a big name tight end. The game-flow set up well for him. Much like Kyle Rudolph, I am not worried about it either.
2016 TE Targets Week 4
The two top tight ends in Week 4 finished one-two in targets. Greg Olsen had 13 and Jordan Reed had 10. Reed was the better tight end this week, scoring two touchdowns. Jason Witten finished with nine, who was just after those guys. Witten continues to be a safety blanket for Dak Prescott. Jimmy Graham had another 100 yard receiving performance, and had eight targets. This is very encouraging, and we could be finally seeing him used like his glory days in New Orleans. We will continue to keep an eye on his targets, but I am back on the Graham train. Cameron Brate, who has the tight end spot all to himself now in Tampa had eight yet again. Delanie Walker also finished with eight targets, but only caught two. Antonio Gates being injured has opened the door to Hunter Henry who had seven targets. Henry has been impressive, and is worth a look as long as Gates is out. His targets continue to be there, and he has been efficient. Sammy Watkins being out might open the door for Charles Clay to see more targets in this passing attack. He had seven on Sunday against New England, and that might be a number that he can consistently get.
2016 TE Targets Week 3
Not only did Kevin White see an increase in targets under Brian Hoyer, but Zach Miller had nine targets. He also caught two touchdowns. Usually we see quarterbacks who are thrown into these types of situations rely on tight ends. There were four tight ends with ten targets this week, Cameron Brate, Kyle Rudolph, Greg Olsen, and Ryan Griffin. Rudolph has been used quite a bit by the Vikings so far this season. With no real secondary threat as a true receiver, you should continue to see Rudolph have a pretty big workload. Now Jimmy Graham, it has been a while since we talked about him. He was targeted nine times on Sunday, and caught six for 100 yards and a touchdown. Nine targets might be a stretch going forward, but 6-8 is where he should find himself between with Russell Wilson opening things up a bit more. The Colts ran a lot of two tight end sets in Week 3 to deal with the loss of Donte Moncrief for a few weeks. Jack Doyle saw six targets, while Dwayne Allen saw five. Both should be threats inside the red zone with the lack of size on the Indianapolis Colts.
2016 TE Targets Week 2
Dennis Pitta is alive! He had 12 targets in his Week 2 matchup against the Browns, and caught nine of them. The next closest was Greg Olsen at eight. If Pitta can keep racking up targets, he will be a viable fantasy option on a weekly basis. Jacob Tamme and Kyle Rudolph both saw eight targets and caught a touchdown in Week 2. This was encouraging if you took them for cheap, or were streaming. Rudolph has been used heavily in 2016, with just five targets less than Stefon Diggs. Coby Fleener was the complete opposite. He had eight targets, but only caught two of them. Fleener has not looked good in New Orleans, but hopefully the targets keep coming. We might have to worry if Drew Brees will stop looking his way. Delanie Walker had six targets, who was Marcus Mariota's number one weapon last season. Things have been low in targets, but he capitalized on them. Jason Witten saw just four targets in Week 2, as many went to Dez Bryant. After a Week 1 double-digit target game, things have opened up a little bit. With the loss of Donte Moncrief for the Colts, expect Dwayne Allen to see more than four targets, like he did against the Broncos.
2016 TE Targets Week 1
Jason Witten saw 14 targets in week 1, as he usually thrashes the Giants. It had more to do with Dak Prescott being able to just dump balls off to him when nothing opened up. Tight ends are usually tied to rookie quarterbacks, as we saw with Delanie Walker last year. Witten might not see 14 again, but sitting around 10 isn't out of the question. Coby Fleener was nonexistent in his Saints debut, and it was a bit frustrating. This might be due to the fact New Orleans has so many weapons on offense. Lets give it another week before we hop off the Fleener train.
2015 TE Targets
2015 TE Targets Notes
While most have been focusing on the emergence of wide receivers the past few seasons, the true and bigger increase in role and production has been at the tight end position. With the extinction of fullback position, and the need for pass blocking and catching, tight ends have become more and more en vogue to feature in offensive attacks. This was most apparent in not only an anecdotal sense, but also in results. Four tight ends saw above 120 targets in 2015, and nine saw above 100. In 2016, eight tight ends had above 800 receiving yards, tied for the most since 2000. From 2000 to 2002 (three seasons), NFL offenses produced eight total tight ends with above 800 receiving yards. This is an important factor to consider going forward
In terms of breaking the players down, let's get started. While it's fair to question the ages of some of the top target-hog tight ends from 2015, the likes of Gary Barnidge, Antonio Gates, Jason Witten, Delanie Walker and Greg Olsen simply don't have competition for targets or players coming for their role in the offense. Simply put, unless father time or injuries come for these players, they should continue on the same pace they set for themselves in previous seasons. Barnidge is obviously the one year wonder of the bunch, but the Browns signed him to a longer term deal this offseason and didn't draft a year one replacement or bring someone in to steal targets.
Injuries are a bigger issue for tight ends as they're blocking an in the trenches more often than any other skill position player, so it's important to be aware of players like Jordan Reed, Julius Thomas, Rob Gronkowski and Travis Kelce, who all have significant injury histories that can't be ignored. While all of them have significant upside in above average offenses, there should be concern of whether or not they can stay on the field, and this should be taken into account on a week-to-week as well as a season long basis.
Zach Ertz and Coby Fleener both signed long term deals this offseason, the only difference is that Fleener went to Drew Brees and the Saints, and Ertz lost Chip Kelly. Ertz should see a small increase off his 112 targets in 2015, while Fleener should see a significant increase in both snaps and targets as he moves on from what was a chaotic and injury-riddled Colts offense. Both players should be prominent targets in their respective offenses. Tyler Eifert only had 74 targets in 2015, but he made them count, reeling in 52 receptions and 13 touchdowns. Not only was this tops at the tight end position, but he was tied for fourth out of all receiving options.
Eric Ebron(70), LaDarius Green(63), Clive Walford(50) and Vance McDonald(46) all expect to increase on their targets in 2016. Other than Green, they're all in their rookie contracts and are heading into very important years of their careers. All four have a chance to be second or third options in their respective passing games, all of which were above average last year.