In the fantasy football world, having a premium tight end can be a huge difference-maker in matchups, but the cream of the crop at the position also comes with a very high price. Even without Travis Kelce, Mark Andrews, and Kyle Pitts on your roster, there are still plenty of lesser-named tight ends with the potential to be impactful down the stretch.
Okonkwo is entering his second year on the Tennessee Titans in a very young receiving core. Both Robert Woods and Austin Hooper are no longer with the team, vacating 151 targets. With Hooper gone and little competition added, “Chig” will step into the full role of TE1 on the Titans.
Okonkwo made the most of his opportunities last season, showcasing his run-after-the-catch ability. He also led all tight ends in yards per route run with 3.26 and fantasy points per route at 0.7. With an increased role, the Maryland product looks to be a focal point of the Tennessee offense with top-five potential.
Njoku had one of his best seasons yet in 2022, finishing as the TE11 overall in PPR formats but ranking eighth in points per game (10.1). Njoku is a big, athletic tight end, and he’s only 27 years old. Even with the addition of Elijah Moore, he should still be the No. 2 receiving option on offense. Njoku had the second-most red zone targets among tight ends with 20 last season, and that number could increase.
In a tough division, the Cleveland Browns will need to throw the ball and put up points. Deshaun Watson should only improve from last season, as well. If he stays healthy, Njoku can quickly become a reliable top-10 option.
Johnson is a former wide receiver-turned-tight end and a fantastic athlete at the position. He may also be used in the slot more in a role similar to Hunter Renfrow of the Las Vegas Raiders. According to Myles Simmons of NBC Sports, Johnson seems to have built some good chemistry with new New Orleans Saints quarterback Derek Carr, an upgrade from Andy Dalton. With this and the second-easiest strength of schedule for tight ends (according to FantasyPros), Johnson is worth a serious look in dynasty.
Musgrave was recently drafted in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers. An interesting prospect, Musgrave is extremely athletic with great speed, and he has very similar metrics to star Travis Kelce (according to RAS Football). Musgrave showed a lot of potential in his final season at Oregon State, although it was unfortunately cut short due to injury. If he kept up his pace, Musgrave could have found himself drafted much earlier, but there is still a lot of unknown.
In Green Bay, Musgrave enters a pretty weak tight end room with Josiah Deguara, Tyler Davis, and fellow draftee Tucker Kraft, who went off the board in the third round. Davis only had seven targets all of last season and never ran more than five routes in a game. Deguara is the veteran in the room and has shown some connection with Jordan Love, but he has always been projected as more of an H-back hybrid. He also enters a contract year. Musgrave, on the other hand, offers youth and should be the true receiving option at tight end. He has already stood out in OTAs, building a rapport with Love and earning first-team reps, per Bill Huber of Sports Illustrated.
Although tight ends don’t often produce much their first season, Musgrave looks to be a reliable, true pass-catching tight end for the Packers in years to come. Tight ends are often a young quarterback’s best friend, and Musgrave could garner a lot of targets, especially in the red zone. Musgrave can very well be worth the price of a mid-third-round rookie pick or more.
Kmet had a slow start to the 2022 season but came alive later. Player Profiler states that he led the Chicago Bears in snap share, garnering five or more targets in seven games.
The Bears added DJ Moore in a blockbuster trade with the Carolina Panthers, but both Chase Claypool and Darnell Mooney fell below expectations. As Justin Fields continues to progress, Kmet should become his No. 2 target on the field. At only 24 years old, he could definitely return an investment in dynasty leagues.
The Miami Dolphins’ tight end room is extremely weak. With the departure of Mike Gesicki, they are left with Durham Smythe, Eric Saubert, and veteran Tyler Kroft, none of whom have consistently or historically done much in the receiving game. Enter, sixth-round rookie Elijah Higgins.
Higgins played wide receiver at Stanford, leading the team in receptions and receiving yards while logging career-highs in both categories. Now in the NFL, he will transition to tight end. Although the Dolphins’ offense will still center around Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle, in a weak tight end room, Higgins could emerge as the top tight end target if he lives up to his potential. He’s worth a stash in dynasty leagues and may even be available on the waiver wire.
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