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When addressing your dynasty problem, your solution should be proportionate to the size of your problem. At the tight end position, there can be three levels of solutions: small measures, half measures, and full measures.
The scoring at the tight end position can get condensed. We currently project 19 tight ends to finish with at least 50 catches and 500 receiving yards. All 19 are projected to finish in the Top 20 of the fantasy scoring at the tight end position.
We project eleven tight ends with 60 receptions and 600 yards and only seven at 70 receptions and 700 receiving yards. In the two to three points-per-game differential between 50/500 and 70/700, there are 12 tight ends projected who will be subjecting themselves to the whims of touchdown variance.
You need to be very careful when paying for upgrades in this range. Instead, look to make smaller waiver wire and throw in type bets at the position. Look for players who can break into the 50/500 tier with volume. In deeper premium leagues, look for higher-end backup players or younger players with high efficiency on a route-run basis.
This is a dangerous type of move on your dynasty team. In dynasty leagues without premium scoring at the tight end position, the difference between TE6, Kyle Pitts (176.6 points), and TE12, Noah Fant (159.0 points), is small over the course of a season. In terms of wins, this is less than 0.20 wins throughout a 14-week regular season. The difference was also small in points per game, where TE6, Darren Waller (12.1), only outscored TE12, Kyle Pitts (10.4), by only 1.7 points.
In our current projections, we project 12 tight ends between 50 receptions and 500 receiving yards and 70 receptions and 700 receiving yards.
Spending a lot of attention on this range of the position is a low payoff.
When you are looking for targets in this range of the position, look for players that stand out. There are three production methods: massive efficiency, massive volume, and high touchdown rates.
The high touchdown rate players are tough to predict. Be careful about using those tight ends to address your dynasty problem after the fact. For example, a risky bet is trading for Dawson Knox, who is coming off a position-leading nine touchdowns on 49 receptions.
Also, in tight end premium dynasty leagues, tight ends can be viable flex plays, so addressing the position with half measures can have a dual utility.
Recent trades include:
High-end solutions at the position include the handful of truly elite tight ends in any given year. These include three to five any given year.
These elite options can come in multiple forms. At present, the elites at the positions include older options (Travis Kelce), younger options (Kyle Pitts), and something in the middle (Mark Andrews and George Kittle).
The cost differs and requires your full measure to match your contending window. If you are in a contending window with aging players, taking a discount on Travis Kelce, who has a higher immediate upside, may make more sense than paying up a longer-term but lower immediate upside player in Kyle Pitts.
Regarding paying up at positions, tight end in premium scoring formats ranks second behind quarterbacks in Superflex/2QB leagues in the ability of elite players who can make the difference.
Recent trades include:
- Malik Willis, Michael Gallup, Dawson Knox, 2023 1st for Kyle Pitts (tight end premium league where rarely traded)
- Brevin Jordan and 2023 1st for Travis Kelce (standard tight end format)
- D.J. Moore and 2.02 for Tony Pollard and Travis Kelce (2 PPR for tight ends)
- Michael Pittman Jr for George Kittle (1.5 PPR for tight ends)
- Deebo Samuel for George Kittle (2 PPR for tight ends)
- D’Andre Swift for Mark Andrews
The tight end position can be solved by streaming the position in season and can be difficult to find a difference-making solution as a half measure. If you have a contending team, upgrading to an elite tight end, particularly in premium formats, is one of the most consequential and predictable ways to upgrade your team.
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