New England Patriots: Fantasy Relevance of WRs and TEs


In a stacked offense, only a few players will be guaranteed certain amounts of production.

With the summer heating up, fantasy football takes and rankings will be on the rise. Normally, players like to focus on athletes on high-powered offenses, and New England has just that. However, with an abundance of competent players, as well as a quarterback who enjoys spreading the ball around, there will be tough choices when thinking about which Patriot route-runner you want to take you to the championship.

The first option is very clear, but the situation becomes murky after that. In a PPR-league, Julian Edelman can be viewed as a top-10 option based off of the looks he receives. Even in half-PPR and standard leagues, Edelman can be viewed as a strong WR2. He does most of his damage in the center of the field, and with Gronkowski announcing his retirement, Edelman could be set for a career year a few months removed from a Super Bowl MVP award and new contract extension.

N’Keal Harry, the 32nd overall pick of this year’s NFL Draft, was drafted to fill out an otherwise extremely weak receiving group. The ASU product is a big-bodied receiver who will most likely run the majority of his routes on the outside. A perimeter receiver who can play possession or exploit a defense deep, Harry could develop into the rock-solid number two option for Tom Brady. A large portion of his success, fantasy-wise, will depend on if Josh Gordon returns to football.


The next option up is Philip Dorsett, one of the few receivers on the team who played last season in a Patriots’ uniform. While it is very unlikely that you’ll be starting Dorsett at any point next season, he’ll always be in consideration because of the man throwing him the football. An injury to Edelman or Harry would immediately thrust him in to a starting position, but until then, it is not even worth rostering him.

Tight ends have been a mess for New England since Rob Gronkowski retired this offseason. Austin Seferian-Jenkins was brought in to be the next big man for Brady, but didn’t even make it to training camp before he was cut. Matt LaCosse was signed from the Denver Broncos, and with the loss of Seferian-Jenkins, it appears he will be the starting tight end entering the summer.


It is quite hard to predict the tight end to own entering the next season – more moves could be made to bring in a greater veteran presence at the position, or LaCosse could end up being cut before the season starts. Until the roster begins to trim, it appears that the Patriots are content with their current tight end situation. None of the current tight ends should be drafted, as Brady enjoys spreading the ball around and we know nothing of his current chemistry with the large route runners.

Although the team will certainly put up points, there are just so many different ways those touchdowns can be scored. Feel comfortable taking Edelman in the fourth or fifth round, depending on scoring, and don’t be afraid to take a shot on Harry. As a first round-pick with immeasurable talent, he could emerge as a league winner later in the year.


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