#1: Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs
I’ve never been a fan of drafting a tight end before the sixth round of a fantasy draft and definitely not in the first three rounds. Travis Kelce is the one exception. He is so far ahead of the curve of the rest of his position and puts up receiver-like numbers (97 catches, 1,229 yards and 5 TDs in 2019) which makes him an incredibly valuable asset. Knowing that you can lock in 10+ points a game at your TE slot is the peace of mind that every fantasy owner should desire. Kelce is the easy choice for top tight end this season.
2019 stats: 97 receptions for 1,229 yards and 5 TDs
#2: George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers
In my opinion, drafting George Kittle with a top-25 pick is a foolish decision, but that doesn’t mean he’s not the second best tight end to draft in fantasy football this year. Kittle is a monster player that thrives in Kyle Shanahan’s system. He seems to be the type of player that is so motivated by making big blocks that he is able to drive himself to make game-changing plays in the passing game. Kittle is a player that you will be happy you rostered…just don’t reach for him and take him in the third round. He hasn’t separated himself enough from the rest of the pack to deserve that.
2019 stats: 85 receptions for 1,053 yards and 5 TDs
#3: Darren Waller, Las Vegas Raiders
Darren Waller had a breakout season last year and actually scored more fantasy points than Kittle, albeit in two extra games. Waller seemed to strike a rapport almost immediately with Derek Carr last year which should mean good things again for him this year. He had five games last season with 100+ yards receiving. The stats that keeps Waller from being higher on this list is his touchdown rate. Waller found the end zone in just two games last season, a big disappointment for his fantasy owners.
2019 stats: 90 receptions for 1,145 yards and 3 TDs
#4: Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles
The red flag for Zach Ertz is always going to be injuries. Not injuries to Ertz, he’s missed just 4 games in the last 3 years, but injuries to Carson Wentz that have sometimes kept Ertz from achieving success. Despite that, Ertz is one of the best fantasy tight ends every year due to his high rate of usage. Ertz was targeted 6+ times in all but one game last season, and he was targeted 10+ times in six games last season. Carson Wentz loves getting the ball to his big tight end, so if you are in the market for a tight end after Kelce and Kittle are off the board, you can’t go wrong with Ertz.
2019 stats: 88 receptions for 916 yards and 6 TDs
#5: Mark Andrews, Baltimore Ravens
Mark Andrews had a breakout season last year as he found a great rapport with Lamar Jackson. The biggest usage rates for Andrews came in the red zone (which is obviously what every fantasy owner wants to hear), and he scored 10 touchdowns on the season. While I don’t expect Andrews to have another 10 touchdown year, fantasy owners that draft him would be pretty happy with 7-8 and another 800-900 yards receiving right? That all seems pretty feasible which makes Andrews a top-5 tight end target in this year’s draft.
2019 stats: 64 receptions for 852 yards and 10 TDs
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