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Best available tight ends on the Week 17 waiver wire

Looking for help at tight end to close out your fantasy season? We take a look at five players widely available in Yahoo! leagues.

Minnesota Vikings tight end Irv Smith Jr. runs with the ball after a catch for a 36-yard gain in the first quarter against the Atlanta Falcons at U.S. Bank Stadium.  Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports

It’s a guessing game every week at tight end. Let’s get ready to take a stab at this position one final time during the 2020 season. Here are five tight ends with under 50 percent ownership in traditional fantasy football leagues that managers can consider picking up for Week 17.

Irv Smith Jr., Vikings (15 percent)

Next up — at Lions

Assuming Kyle Rudolph remains sidelined by his foot injury, Smith is the clear priority add under these parameters. He scored in Week 14, scored twice in Week 16 and should have scored in Week 15 but dropped an easy TD. Now he gets the Lions, who officially stopped playing defense some time ago and have allowed double-digit fantasy points under PPR scoring to the last four lead tight ends they faced.

Jimmy Graham, Bears (27 percent)

Next up — vs. Packers

Graham is still playing much less than TE Cole Kmet, but those extra snaps haven’t led to much production from the rookie. Meanwhile, Graham reached the end zone in Week 14 and then twice in Week 16. Opposing tight ends scored against the Packers in Weeks 14 and 16, and there will be opportunities to do the same in what should be a pass-heavy affair.

Dalton Schultz, Cowboys (20 percent)

Next up — at Giants

Schultz hasn’t topped 50 yards in Week 8, and his target count is a small handful in good weeks these days. But with the Cowboys’ offense racking up points over their past three games, there is a chance that Schultz will find the end zone. The Giants don’t present a daunting matchup; they allowed a tight end touchdown in Weeks 14 and 15. Baltimore’s Mark Andrews posted a 6-76-0 line against New York last weekend.

Stephen Anderson, Chargers (0 percent)

Next up — at Chiefs

Let’s go deep. Anderson filled in for Hunter Henry in Week 16 after the latter was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list last Thursday. Anderson played about half as many snaps as TE Donald Parham, but it was Anderson who garnered six targets — second-most on the team — and caught four passes for 48 yards. Parham, by the way, turned in a 2-47-0 line on just three targets. The Chargers are in desperate need of healthy, capable receivers right now, and the 6-foot-3, 230-pound Anderson can create mismatches. He will go up against a Chiefs defense that will be resting all its key players in Week 17.

Jordan Akins, Texans (5 percent)

Next up — vs. Titans

Akins has been targeted 16 times over the past three weeks. He hasn’t really done much to stand — his five-catch, 50-yard performance against the Colts in Week 15 was his best statistical game of the three — but there is enough opportunity here for Akins to be worthwhile in Week 17. The Titans are in the middle of the pack when it comes to fantasy points allowed to TEs.