8 Tight Ends with an Easy Fantasy Strength of Schedule
At times, the volume of noise surrounding fantasy football can feel like a bad acid trip, with endless amounts of new data, charts, and graphs popping up all over the place. With so much information available, it can feel overwhelming for some and be confusing for others as to what they should focus on to benefit them the most on draft day.
When it comes to using strength of schedule, knowing which tight ends have the most favorable path in front of them is more advantageous than perhaps any other position in a fantasy draft. This is in part due to the amount of disparity between the top few elite tight ends and the rest of the pack. In other words, if you don’t draft Rob Gronkowski, Travis Kelce or Jordan Reed, there is a chance you will find yourself combing the waiver wire or streaming the tight end position at some point throughout the course of the season.
By looking ahead and evaluating each team’s schedule you can up your chances of drafting a mid- to low-tier player who could hit it big, therefore potentially eliminating the need for the waiver wire or streaming options. No matter which strategy you choose to implement this season, walking into your draft knowing which tight ends will benefit from the softest schedules gives you a leg up on your competition and, as fantasy players, we will all take any advantage that we can possibly get.
Below is a list of mid- to low-rated tight ends who, according to 4for4’s strength of schedule (SOS) rankings and schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA), will have the easiest route from week to week through the NFL schedule. From here you can decide whether your approach will be to reach for a top-tier player, aim for upside on amid-gradee tight end, or use this data to prepare to stream a few players as the season develops.
- Fantasy Strength of Schedule Rankings: QB | RB | WR | TE | K | DEF
- Fantasy Strength of Schedule Hot Spots: By Player | By Position
- Fantasy Strength of Schedule at Other Positions: QB | RB | WR
Martellus Bennett, Packers
Green Bay heads into the 2017 season with the third easiest schedule versus the TE position in PPR formats, and the fifth best in standard scoring leagues. The Packers’ opponents are expected to give up an average of 13.6 PPR points and 8.2 standard points throughout the course of the season. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers is a notorious stickler for details and Bennett has spent his summer focused on getting in sync with the known perfectionist.
Throughout the course of the season, Green Bay will face six good or great tight end matchups according to SOS rankings, which bodes well for Bennett and the pass-happy Packers offense. His ADP is hovering somewhere in the seventh to eighth round, which is about where it should be for a potential top-15 TE.
Zach Miller, Bears
Sure, you most likely let out some sort of a groan when reading the name Zach Miller, but we can’t deny the Bears’ supple schedule for TEs in 2017. Only one of their opponents in the first half of the season is considered a bad matchup to TEs, while three of Chicago’s last five games involve teams with very porous defenses to the TE position - the Bengals (aFPA 16.8), the Browns (aFPA 17.1) and the Lions (aFPA 15.3).
Miller has certainly had his share of injuries over the past few seasons and his health is still a legitimate concern as we start this one. If healthy, the Bears TE should outscore his late round ADP, however, if he can’t get it together physically, Miller could lose the starting job to former Dolphin Dion Sims or rookie Adam Shaheen.
No matter who lines up at TE for Chicago this season, it’s a good idea to keep them in mind for streaming purposes or to stash on your bench in very deep leagues for their TE-friendly schedule alone.
Continue reading for six more TEs with an easy 2017 schedule...
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