Tight end can be a difficult position to find many quality fantasy options at, but two tight ends saw strongly expanded target volume in Week 14 and are available in almost all fantasy leagues. Another tight end could benefit from the loss of a star WR to injury.
Ian Thomas, Carolina Panthers (0.5 percent)
With Greg Olsen (concussion) sidelined in Week 14, Thomas saw a significantly expanded role. Thomas saw a heavy 10 targets, and while some of that was due to the score, the strong target volume is encouraging regardless. Thomas caught five of his 10 targets for 57 yards and a TD, with his TD coming on a red zone target. If Olsen remains out in Week 15, Thomas is in line to continue an expanded role.
Jordan Akins, Houston Texans (2 percent)
A lopsided score forced the Texans into a heavy 50 pass attempts, but Akins saw nine targets in Week 14, second most among all tight ends in Week 14 and five more than the four targets Houston’s other TE Darren Fells saw. Akins got good depth on his routes, averaging about 13 air yards per target, a strong number by the standards of the TE position. Akins has a good matchup in Week 15 against a Titans team that has allowed more fantasy points than average to tight ends.
O.J. Howard, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (39 percent)
Mike Evans injured his hamstring in Week 14, and the injury is expected to keep him out in Week 15. Evans ranks fourth in the NFL with 116 targets, and his absence will make Howard a candidate to see expanded target volume. Howard is talented but has been underused in the Buccaneers’ offense, averaging just 3.5 targets per game. Tampa Bay has a strong matchup against a poor Lions pass defense in Week 15.