Ranking fantasy TEs by tier

You won't draft as many guys here as the other skill positions, but Jeff Ratcliffe still sorts them into tiers for you.

| 4 months ago
(Rob Carr/Getty Images)

(Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Ranking fantasy TEs by tier


We’ve talked tiers at the quarterback, running back and wide receiver positions (catch up here). Now let’s get into the tight end tiers. Like quarterback, the value at the position is clustered in the middle and later rounds of the draft. It doesn’t make a ton of sense spending an early pick on tight end this season.

Tier 1 – Rounds 2-5

Rob Gronkowski, Patriots
Jordan Reed, Redskins
Greg Olsen, Panthers

In the wide receiver tiers article, I talked about the Big Three of Antonio Brown, Julio Jones and Odell Beckham Jr. We also have a Big Three at tight end this season. Unlike last year, where Gronkowski was alone on an island as the sole top-tier fantasy option, the pack has somewhat caught up. Reed actually outscored Gronk on a per-opportunity basis last season. He’s the clear No. 2 fantasy option at tight end this season and is a threat to finish as the scoring leader at the position.

Olsen doesn’t offer as high a fantasy ceiling as Gronk or Reed, but his extremely high floor makes him a safe top-end option. That being said, the value cost of these three players may be a little too much to justify on draft day considering the middle-round depth at the position.

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| Director of Fantasy

Jeff Ratcliffe is the Director of Fantasy at Pro Football Focus. He produces all of our projections and is one of the most accurate rankers in the fantasy industry. Jeff also is the host of our show on SiriusXM fantasy sports radio and is one of the main hosts of our Fantasy Slant podcast.

  • Phil

    IMO Gronkowski is in a tier of his own. In standard leagues he’s the only TE that’s projected more than 10 points per game at 11. Reed and Olsen follow in the next tier as they’re projected 9ppg. Tier 3 would consist of Fleener, Eifert, Walker, Kelce, Ertz and Ladarius Green (who you failed to place in any tier) are projected between 8-7ppg. Tier 4 would be Gates, Barnidge, Witten, Graham, Allen, Bennett, Thomas, Clay and Miller at 6ppg. After Tier 4 there aren’t any players worth drafting as some undrafted TE’s are projected 5ppg. No perticular order for any tier. Projections are based on standard league rules with 1 points for every 10 receiving yards and 6 points for TD’s.

    • Phil

      I stand corrected my mistake! My apologies. Didn’t know about the headache or ankle injury so I jumped the gun after I didn’t see his name in the third tier. Still think he’s worth more than any player in the forth tier though. He has a good QB to get him the ball and the rest of the team is lacking talent after losing Bell for 4 games and Bryant for the season so the opportunities are there to produce.