Tight end is consistently one of the toughest positions to get production from in traditional fantasy football and DFS. Of course on DraftKings, you always have the option of paying up at the position, but then it limits the rest of your lineup.
It’s not a deep pool of attractive options on DK’s Week 1 main slate, although some names stand out. Here are three tight ends who’ve had some recent success that I think actually make for poor DFS value in Week 1.
Eric Ebron (IND @ LAC) — $4,100
Outside of the elite three TE that we had in fantasy last season, Ebron was really the next-best option in 2018. He averaged 13.8 DK points, but that was thanks to a fluky 15 touchdowns. The matchup against the Chargers here is just slightly below average for the TE, but it’s more the situation that scares me off.
Aside from regression setting in, the Colts’ personnel is completely different in 2019. A huge part of Ebron’s career-season was the absence of Jack Doyle ($3,400). Indy’s other TE only played in parts of six games, but was successful, averaging 10.3 DK points. And suddenly we have Jacoby Brissett ($4,400) at the helm for the Colts, with Andrew Luck retired. I think Brissett is solid, and a terrific QB value in Week 1, but he’s no Luck when it comes to getting the ball into the hands of his playmakers.
Jordan Reed (WAS @ PHI) — $3,600
On the surface, Reed feels like a value at just $3,600. But it’s just too easy to poke holes in the spot he’s in this week. Surprise … Reed’s already dealing with injury before the regular season’s even started, this time a concussion that’s limited him in practice leading into Week 1.
Assuming Reed’s cleared to play, Washington’s offense is just putrid this season. It has one of the worst offensive lines in football, and Case Keenum ($4,900) will be under center to begin the season. In my opinion, Keenum is the outright worst QB play on this slate, and may not even be able to stay upright in this game. The Eagles ranked atop the league in DK points allowed to the TE position in 2018, and limited Reed to 21 yards the only time he faced them. It’s also worth mentioning, Reed is infamous for exiting games with a new injury, which at this point, has to come into play given his track record.
George Kittle (SF @ TB) — $6,600
This one’s a little more surprising, because I don’t hate Kittle as a play overall. He’s easily a top-three TE play straight up, but I don’t think he’s worth as high a salary on DK. Think about this $6,600 price tag … that’s more than Leonard Fournette ($6,100), Dalvin Cook ($6,000), and Chris Carson ($5,700), who are probably my three favorite RB plays.
Aside from wanting to spend elsewhere, I’d rather pay all the way up for Travis Kelce ($7,100) if I do have to go nuts at TE. I’m not sold that Jimmy Garappolo ($5,800) won’t have to shake some rust in the regular season before he gets comfortable again, and the 49ers have more healthy pass-catching options than they did down the stretch in 2018. Kittle didn’t fully breakout until after Jimmy G got hurt last season, and actually had a bad game in Tampa in Week 12 — a 6-48-0 line.
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