Thomason: Overvalued/Undervalued Tight Ends

You should be wary of the expectations for Eric Ebron and Jared Cook.

Jack Thomason
August 27, 2019 - 12:28 pm

(670 The Score) We're taking a look at overvalued and undervalued players in fantasy football to help you get ready for your drafts.

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We recently evaluated quarterbacksrunning backs and receivers, and now we're diving into tight ends.

OVERVALUED

Eric Ebron, Colts -- Ebron would’ve been an overvalued tight end even before the shocking news of quarterback Andrew Luck’s retirement, but now it feels like more of a certainty. Ebron made his money with a massive bump in playing time due to Jack Doyle’s hip injury and 13 touchdowns last season. Doyle is now healthy, Jacoby Brissett is the starting quarterback and all arrows are pointing down on Ebron matching or coming close to his ADP of TE8. Doyle has seen 13 snaps with the first-team offense to Ebron’s nine this preseason, and the splits were similar last year. Doyle is the player with value, as he was Brissett’s favorite receiver in 2017 when Luck missed the year with a shoulder injury.

Jared Cook, Saints -- I can’t believe Cook is only 31. It seems like he has been touted as a fantasy sleeper or a relevant TE1 for the last 10 years. He finally came through over the course of last year, racking up career-highs with 68 catches (68), 896 yards and six touchdowns. The crush is back on as he landed with star quarterback Drew Brees and the Saints, but Brees quietly wasn't his elite self in 2018. He threw for just 3,992 yards and had the third-lowest passing attempts (489) of his 18-year career. Brees ranked 24th in passing attempts, while the Saints ranked fifth in rushing attempts. The lower passing volume will cut into Cook’s production, given that he’s likely third or fourth in the pecking order for targets. He’s currently being drafted as the TE7. 

Other overvalued tight ends: Zach Ertz, Noah Fant, T.J. Hockenson

UNDERVALUED

Austin Hooper, Falcons -- Hooper quietly finished as the TE7 in 2018. There’s no reason to think he can’t repeat that performance, given the explosive offense he’s in and the red-zone opportunities he’ll have. Hooper isn’t the flashiest player and he had a few monster performances that helped carry him to his ranking last year, but I like his value at the position, given that you can draft him outside the top 10 tight ends (TE12) and he's still as good of a bet as any to finish inside the top 10. Hooper is often forgotten about and can be poached around the 10th round.

Darren Waller, Raiders -- By all accounts, Waller has looked awesome in Raiders camp and has been receiving consistent praise from coaches and teammates. It also doesn’t hurt to see some of his splash plays on "Hard Knocks." As a member of the Raiders last year, Cook totaled 101 targets. The additions of receivers Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams won’t allow for Waller to hit that number, but he will have plenty of room to operate in the middle of the field with those two operating on the outside. Waller is currently being drafted as the TE22. He's still a flier, but with his athletic profile and the use of the tight end position by both quarterback Derek Carr and coach Jon Gruden, he's worth more than his current ADP. 

Other undervalued tight ends: Jordan Reed, Chris Herndon, Tyler Eifert

Jack Thomason is 670 The Score’s fantasy football expert. Follow him on Twitter @jthomason77 and feel free to ask fantasy questions.