It’s all about mixing and matching salaries in DFS. You can’t field a team full of stars and thus you must find the best values around the slate and fade those who come overpriced for the production they will return.
So don’t get fooled by the boldness of the names, and rather look at their games. Sometimes highly coveted tight ends can put out a dud, while others can go under-the-radar in Sunday’s main slate.
Here are the best and worst values at the position for Week 8 (values from DraftKings).
Week 8 - DFS TE Best Values
Hunter Henry, LAC (at CHI) — $4,900
You don’t know how good it felt when Hunter Henry came back from injury in Week 6 to add another rosterable option to the tight end position. He had a monster game against Pittsburgh (100 yards and two TDs on eight receptions, 30 DKFP) and it looks like it wasn’t a fluke. Just this weekend facing Tennessee, Henry fell just short of another 100-yard outing sitting at 97 on six receptions this time. He only lacked the score, but his production without getting those extra-TD points is more than enough to make him one of the best players — let alone values — at the position. Henry’s salary is “only” the sixth-highest for tight ends in Week 8’s main slate, yet he’s already averaging the most points per game at 19.6. Chicago isn’t the easiest of matchups, but the Bears are allowing the 11th-most fantasy points per game to tight ends—including 13-plus points performances from opposing TEs in four out of their six games.
Chris Herndon, NYJ (at JAX) — $3,500
It’s been a while since we last saw Herndon on the field, but he should be back in Week 8. Assuming he plays, he will do so with the 12th-highest salary of tight ends this weekend. Yes, he still has to prove he is worth it, but that is cheaper than other equally volatile options at TE, much more knowing how scarce the position is and how the outcomes are more random than ever. Last season, Herndon finished as TE16 overall on the DraftKings leaderboard, averaging 12.9 yards per reception (sixth-best among tight ends), scoring four touchdowns (eighth best), and becoming the fourth-most targeted player on the Jets’ roster. With Sam Darnold back healthy and his tendency of looking for short-route-runners like Jamison Crowder often, we can expect Herndon to become one of the most sought-after players by Darnold in passing plays. In seven games so far, the Jaguars have given up 11 or more fantasy points to tight ends in four matches surrendering an average of 45 receiving yards per contest.
Eric Ebron, IND (vs DEN) — $3,400
It took some time, but Ebron finally showed some flashes of his 2018 production against Houston in a tough matchup. He saw low volume (five targets) but made the most of it, hauling in four receptions for 70 yards and a highlight reel one-handed touchdown at the limit of the end zone. It was always obvious that we would need to relax our expectations on Ebron’s repeating what he did just mere months ago, and indeed that has been the case. Removing his couple of games under two fantasy points, though, Ebron has always scored between seven and 11 points in each of the games he’s played, with his last outing in Week 7 marking his season-best at 17 DKFP. Denver comes next in a slightly more favorable matchup for tight ends. The Broncos have had five of seven games in which they have given up more than 10 DKFP to the position, and you can’t ask for much more given the status of the tight end corps league-wide.
Week 8 - DFS TE Worst Values
Zach Ertz, PHI (at BUF) — $5,100
While it can’t be said that Ertz’s season has been bad, it is true that he has lowered his level considerably. Every member of the renown “Big Three” seems to be on a low this year, and Ertz is getting the worst of it, yet he’s still carrying the fifth-highest salary on the slate at the position. Through the first four weeks of the season, Ertz had been a great play not dependent on scoring touchdowns to put up good points (12.4 DKFP per game in that span), but from that point on he wouldn’t have reached 10 DKFP in any game hadn’t he scored against the Jets in Week 5. In his last two games, Ertz has caught just six passes for 92 yards combined, has not scored a touchdown (he only has one in the season), and has logged a rather mediocre 8.4 and 5.8 DKFP respectively. Now he goes to face Buffalo, the No. 2 defense against the position — only behind the Patriots — and one that has been stout, allowing just one tight end (Evan Engram in Week 2) to score more than 8 DKFP and catch more than four passes.
Gerald Everett, LAR (vs CIN) — $4,300
Everett’s last performance is a little deceiving. He found himself in the middle of a positive game script with L.A. leading Atlanta early, his touchdown put the Rams 17 points up, and he didn’t even have to do much to score as he only had to walk the ball through an empty corridor opened to him by blockers after a short screen pass. He saw a massive 10 targets, but could only finish with 5.0 yards per target and 50 total yards on four receptions. Stuck in a loaded offense full of capable receivers, I don’t trust Everett. He looks too touchdown-dependent to me — he’s only logged more than 21 yards once in games without scoring and his average in such games (the no-TD ones) would be of 7.4 DKFP. That is, including his Week 5 performance of 23.6 points. If you also remove that one, Everett is as mediocre a tight end as they come (average of 3.3 DKFP). It’s either touchdown-or-nothing for him and against Cincinnati he won’t have it easy. The Bengals have only surrendered one score to tight ends (all the way back in Week 3) and only the Ravens got their TEs to catch more than four balls and receive passes for more than 70 yards against them.
Greg Olsen, CAR (at SF) — $3,700
The veteran Panther comes back from Carolina’s bye week to face one of the toughest teams in terms of defending opposing tight ends. San Francisco is allowing just 6.6 DKFP per game to the position and no TE has gained more than 32 yards against the Niners so far. Olsen is having a good season, having almost reached his numbers from last season in two-thirds of the games played. Even with that, though, he’s only had two notable performances so far (back-to-back 20-plus points outings in Weeks 2 and 3) and he was helped by scoring two touchdowns in the second of them. That is the only match in which he has been able to score, and in no other game has he seen a single pass inside the 10-yard mark. Olsen carries a floor of zero points with some upside, yes, but he’s a risky play at that salary with other similarly good options facing easier matchups at cheaper salaries this weekend.
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