Friday injury report
It’s worth noting that Jonnu Smith was left off of the injury report after a downgrade to DNP on Thursday.
Dan Arnold popped up on Thursday as a limited practice participant after no injury designation Tuesday or Wednesday. Arnold isn’t likely considered an option for most fantasy lineups, so it won’t much matter to the general public. However, if there is anyone willing to throw Christian Kirk into the lineups, Arnold’s absence could give him a boost in target share.
Out: Jace Sternberger (concussion, illness)
Questionable: Dan Arnold (back), Mike Gesicki (shoulder)
Thursday injury report
Kyle Rudolph was ruled out for the Vikings Christmas Day game against the Saints. Irv Smith once again gets the call for lead snaps at TE and is worth consideration in DFS.
Jonnu Smith was downgraded to DNP Thursday. It’s not a great sign for this tight end who has spent much of the year banged up. Getting in a Friday practice will be key to his return, but fantasy managers should exceed caution. Smith plays on SNF football, so if he does sit, there won’t be many options to stream behind him.
TEs Eric Ebron and Evan Engram each got in a full session.
Mike Gesicki had another limited practice session, a positive sign for Saturday’s game.
Jonnu Smith was added to the injury report with a knee injury on Thursday. Fantasy managers will need to keep a close eye on his practice availability on Friday to get an idea of whether he’ll be active heading into the weekend.
DNP: Jace Sternberger (concussion, illness), Jonnu Smith (knee)
Limited: Mike Gesicki (shoulder)
Full: Eric Ebron (back), Evan Engram (calf)
Wednesday injury report
Kyle Rudolph has been managing a foot injury since his Week 13 appearance against Jacksonville, and this DNP tag isn’t a step in the right direction for a Sunday return. Even with the TE reps to himself, Irv Smith Jr. is nothing more than a dice roll.
Hunter Henry also missed his second consecutive practice with an illness. Donald Parnam Jr. is the next man up for the Chargers should he miss Week 16, but he should not be the next man up for the fantasy managers looking to replace Henry.
Though Steelers TE Eric Ebron snagged a DNP tag following his back injury on Monday Night Football, reports from the team have been encouraging that he could be ready to go for Sunday’s game against the Colts. Fantasy managers will want to keep a close eye on his practice reports through the holiday.
Mike Gesicki’s limited practice looks to be another step in the right direction for his return from a shoulder injury. There were reports that Gesicki had a shot to return Week 15, so it seems like a real possibility that he could be available for Week 16. If not, Durham Smythe is the next man up for the Dolphins and could see a game with decent volume considering the slew of injuries at wide receiver.
DNP: Hunter Henry (illness), Eric Ebron (back), Kyle Rudolph (foot)
Limited: Mike Gesicki (shoulder), Mo Alie-Cox (knee), Evan Engram (calf)
Full: Geoff Swaim (ankle)
Week 15 felt like one of the tamer weeks we’ve seen from the tight end position in some time. Outside of Vikings TE Tyler Conklin managing to rank as the TE7 on the week, we saw familiar names like Darren Waller, Travis Kelce, Noah Fant and Mark Andrews top the charts.
George Kittle was designated for return last week for the 49ers, meaning he could make an appearance in Week 16, should the team be eager for him to suit up. However, given the slew of injuries within the 49ers offense and likely C.J. Beathard under center, it wouldn’t make a ton of sense to risk activating him for what’s surely a lost season.
Eric Ebron took a big hit on Monday Night Football and left on the cart with a back injury. However, reports have been positive, indicating that he should be ready for the team’s Sunday matchup at home against the Colts.
Austin Hooper, Cleveland Browns
Last year, the team to stream tight ends against was the Arizona Cardinals. In 2020? It’s the Jets. Despite the volatility of the position, the Jets have allowed a score to a tight end in six of their last seven outings. The one game they didn’t allow a touchdown to a tight end? That was against the Patriots, who have targeted the tight end position just 26 times in 2020. Hooper is more often considered a PPR asset, but in Week 15, he demonstrated his ability to rack up yardage and come down with a score, making him an easy top-10 play in the fantasy football championship.
Noah Fant, Denver Broncos
Fant bounced back in a big way in Week 16 posting an 8/68/1 line against the Bills. This week, he’ll face a divisional matchup against the Chargers, who have allowed six receiving touchdowns to tight ends in their last eight games. The last time Fant faced the Chargers in Week 8, he managed seven catches and 47 scoreless yards. The “TE TD” went to rookie teammate Albert Okwuegbunam in that outing, who has since landed on injured reserve with a torn ACL. Follow the target share and the plus matchup.
Tight end non-PPR rankings for Week 18
|1||Travis Kelce||KC||@ DEN|
|2||Mark Andrews||BAL||vs PIT|
|3||George Kittle||SF||@ LAR|
|4||Rob Gronkowski||TB||vs CAR|
|5||Zach Ertz||ARI||vs SEA|
|6||Darren Waller||LV||vs LAC|
|7||Dawson Knox||BUF||vs NYJ|
|8||Dalton Schultz||DAL||@ PHI|
|9||Kyle Pitts||ATL||vs NO|
|10||Mike Gesicki||MIA||vs NE|
|11||Hunter Henry||NE||@ MIA|
|12||Noah Fant||DEN||vs KC|
|13||Tyler Higbee||LAR||vs SF|
|14||Gerald Everett||SEA||@ ARI|
|15||Tyler Conklin||MIN||vs CHI|
|16||Jared Cook||LAC||@ LV|
|17||Cole Kmet||CHI||@ MIN|
|18||C.J. Uzomah||CIN||@ CLE|
|19||Evan Engram||NYG||vs WAS|
|20||Albert Okwuegbunam||DEN||vs KC|
|21||Pat Freiermuth||PIT||@ BAL|
|22||Brock Wright||DET||vs GB|
|23||David Njoku||CLE||vs CIN|
|24||Cameron Brate||TB||vs CAR|
|25||Brevin Jordan||HOU||vs TEN|
|26||Foster Moreau||LV||vs LAC|
|27||Jack Doyle||IND||@ JAC|
|28||Austin Hooper||CLE||vs CIN|
|29||Jonnu Smith||NE||@ MIA|
|30||Dallas Goedert||PHI||vs DAL|
|31||Tyler Kroft||NYJ||@ BUF|
|32||Anthony Firkser||TEN||@ HOU|
|33||Tyree Jackson||PHI||vs DAL|
|34||James O'Shaughnessy||JAC||vs IND|
|35||Josiah Deguara||GB||@ DET|
|36||Geoff Swaim||TEN||@ HOU|
|37||Ricky Seals-Jones||WAS||@ NYG|
|38||Dan Arnold||JAC||vs IND|
|39||Adam Trautman||NO||@ ATL|
|40||Jack Stoll||PHI||vs DAL|
|41||Hayden Hurst||ATL||vs NO|
|42||Mo Alie-Cox||IND||@ JAC|
|43||John Bates||WAS||@ NYG|
|44||Jimmy Graham||CHI||@ MIN|
|45||Will Dissly||SEA||@ ARI|
|46||Stephen Anderson||LAC||@ LV|
|47||Marcedes Lewis||GB||@ DET|
|48||Pharaoh Brown||HOU||vs TEN|
|49||Ian Thomas||CAR||@ TB|
|50||Darrell Daniels||ARI||vs SEA|
|51||Durham Smythe||MIA||vs NE|
|52||Adam Shaheen||MIA||vs NE|
|53||O.J. Howard||TB||vs CAR|
|54||Nick Vannett||NO||@ ATL|
|55||Jesse James||CHI||@ MIN|
|56||Jeremy Sprinkle||DAL||@ PHI|
|57||Nick Boyle||BAL||vs PIT|
|58||Blake Bell||KC||@ DEN|
|59||Kyle Rudolph||NYG||vs WAS|