9 Tight Ends Primed to Breakout

9 Tight Ends Primed to Breakout

When it comes to fake football, players are constantly looking for an edge to propel them above their league mates, something different, that perhaps others haven’t thought of yet. The fantasy football landscape is constantly evolving, and with it comes new ways to approach roster construction. While there are a few tiers of solid players who are consistent from year to year, each season brings a new crop of breakout stars who potentially can have a direct effect on whether you are hoisting that league trophy, or stuck with a dirty toilet brush with the words “I suck at fantasy football” written in sharpie across it.


More Breakout Candidates: QB | RB | WR


In this piece, I will take a look at a few statistical categories used to project the breakout potential of tight ends for the 2019 season. According to research done by TJ Hernandez on the most predictable year-to-year stats for the TE position, red zone numbers tend to fluctuate wildly from one year to the next. Studies have shown that only a very limited number of TEs are actually targeted significantly in the red zone, so as a whole their efficiency numbers are too erratic to include in this article.

The term breakout can have several meanings in the fantasy football universe, much like the real world. Most of the guys mentioned below have had varying success in the NFL thus far and a few have even entered the conversation as a team’s No. 1 tight end. For this article, I’m defining breakout as finishing the 2019 season higher than their average draft position (ADP) would suggest, or metaphorically breaking the tight end tier ceiling.

Fantasy Points Per Game

The stat with the strongest year-to-year correlation for TEs was found to be PPR Fantasy Points per Game (PPR FPs/G), with a .57 on the scale from -1.0 to 1.0. An absolute value of 1.0 signifies a perfect correlation so PPR FP/G has a moderate-to-high relationship year after year.

The following TEs have shown promise in terms of PPR FPs/G with the potential of increasing numbers for the 2018 season.

Jack Doyle, Colts

While some are on the Eric Ebron express, Doyle is the TE in Indy with the best value this season. He only participated in six games in 2018, but he was TE10 in PPR FPs/G with 10.1 while on the field. To go a step further, in 2017 Doyle ended as TE5, posting 11.3 PPR FP/G, and that was over the course of 15 contests. Andrew Luck loves himself a TE and there are plenty of balls to go around in an offense that was second in passing attempts last season with 644.

For a player with two top-10 finishes in the past two seasons to be carrying an ADP of TE19 screams legit value and overachievement potential. Doyle is currently coming off draft boards in the 13th round and could find himself with a seat at the TE1 table at the end of the 2019 season.

Chris Herndon, Jets

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