Week 17 Fantasy Football Start/Sit Candidates: Tight Ends

Dec 28, 2022
Week 17 Start/Sit Candidates: Tight Ends

Wondering whom to start and sit at tight end this week? Below are three top-notch starts and one sit option at the tight end position for Week 17 of the 2022 NFL season.

More Start/Sits: QB | WR | RB

Week 16 Review – half-PPR scoring



Tight Ends – Starts

Evan Engram (Jacksonville Jaguars) @ Houston Texans

The Jacksonville Jaguars are implied to score a robust 24.0 points against the division-rival Houston Texans this week.

Since Jacksonville’s Week 11 bye, quarterback Trevor Lawrence has torched opponents via a fourth-ranked 8.55 adjusted yards per pass attempt, per 4for4’s NFL Player Stats Explorer.

Tight end Evan Engram kicked off a four-game terror streak in Week 13, leading to 17.6 half-PPR points per game through Week 16 which leads the position by 3.0 points per game. Among 27 NFL tight ends with at least 10 targets during that span, Engram’s 31.0% targets per route run rate ranks No. 1, and his 2.82 yards per route run rate ranks No. 2.

Houston’s 8.7% explosive pass plays allowed rate ranks 25th, per 4for4’s NFL Team Stats Explorer.

George Kittle (San Francisco 49ers) @ Las Vegas Raiders

The San Francisco 49ers at Las Vegas Raiders game offers a sturdy 45.0-point over/under.

On paper, Las Vegas’ 10th-ranked fantasy football-tight end defense (7.7 half-PPR points allowed per game) appears as stiff competition but the unit just lost coverage linebacker Denzel Perryman (dislocated shoulder) in the midst of a career year.

Tight end George Kittle has hogged a team-high 27.7% target share over the last two weeks, ranking No. 1 in yards per route run (4.35) and yards after catcher per reception (10.9) among 36 NFL tight ends with at least five targets during that span.

Dalton Schultz (Dallas Cowboys) @ Tennessee Titans

Update: Tennessee is resting a significant number of their defensive starters.

The Dallas Cowboys offer a high-flying 25.5-point implied team total against the Tennessee Titans.

Tight end coverage is one of the few soft spots of Tennessee’s defense, as stud safety Amani Hooker is forced to help with slot receiver coverage due to injuries suffered by the secondary’s interior. Tennessee’s 11.2 half-PPR points allowed per game to opposing tight ends is tied for seventh most in the NFL.

Tennessee is allowing 278.8 passing yards and a 9.1% explosive pass plays rate to opposing passing games. Both rates rank bottom-four in the NFL.

Among 28 NFL tight ends with at least 25 targets since Dak Prescott returned from injury in Week 7, Dallas tight end Dalton Schultz ranks top eight in both targets per route run (24.0%) and yards per route run (1.81).

*Check out our full TE Rankings here.

Tight End – Sits

Hayden Hurst (Cincinnati Bengals) vs. Buffalo Bills

Cincinnati Bengals tight end Hayden Hurst (calf) is expected to return following a three-game absence for the team’s Week 17 bout with the Buffalo Bills.

Hurst carries significant risk fantasy managers will have to wait until Monday to find out if he will be active for Monday Night Football and tight ends have a poor record in their initial return from a calf strain. Per Adam Hutchison’s Injury Index, the position experiences a 33.1% dip in fantasy production in their first game back, after averaging 1.8 games missed due to the injury. Hurst’s three-game absence indicates his strain was severe.

Buffalo is allowing a league-low 5.9 half-PPR points per game to the position.

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