Week 8 has already started. We need to begin game-planning for our lineups. I will be here weekly with my starts/sits of the week at tight end. Tight ends are tricky since you’ll likely want to start the best six to eight tight ends no matter what. I will give some players right after that elite tier that you can play and a few sleepers lower in the rankings. Tight end sits will be strictly based on matchups and may impact some of the elites.
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Recapping Last Week
Week seven was not kind to my tight end starts and sits. We went one and five last week. Luke Musgrave got hurt in last week’s game, so he missed a portion. Michael Mayer couldn’t perform without Jimmy G. Logan Thomas and David Njoku were good but didn’t hurt you either. Tyler Higbee was the one correct sit as he finished way outside the top 24.
Hunter Henry, Patriots – TE20
My first start of week eight is Hunter Henry. Henry hasn’t been a great fantasy asset over the last five weeks. Things seem to be going in the wrong direction for Henry this season, but week eight will turn things around. Henry gets a matchup against the Miami Dolphins this week. The Dolphins are a bottom-ten team vs. fantasy tight ends this year. The last time Henry played the Dolphins, he was a TE1. He finished that game with 50 yards and a touchdown. The Patriots need to get Henry back involved, as he is a weapon in this offense. The Dolphins, since Henry’s big game, have allowed two other tight ends well over 50 yards receiving. We know the Dolphins secondary is returning in this game, so the receivers could be locked up, allowing Henry to produce over the middle of the field. He has a chance to return to the TE1 finish.
Michael Mayer, Raiders – TE19
My second starting tight end is Michael Mayer. Mayer didn’t live up to the blow-up game in week six, getting five receptions for 75 yards. It seems that Jimmy G was the answer to his success, as most of his production did come in the first half with Jimmy G as his quarterback. The good thing for Mayer is that Jimmy G is set to return to action in week eight. Mayer has a fantastic matchup on MNF against the Lions. The Lions allow the second most fantasy points per game to the tight end position. They have allowed four touchdowns to tight ends this season. Opposing tight ends can gain yards, as the Lions have allowed four tight ends over 40 yards. I’m giving Mayer a second chance to prove his talent back with the quarterback that helped him produce in week six.
Jake Ferguson, Cowboys – TE12
Jake Ferguson should be a start in your fantasy lineups in week eight. While the last two weeks for Ferguson with only four targets was concerning, he was playing over 80% of the snaps once again. In a favorable matchup, Ferguson can bounce back. The Rams are a bottom-ten unit against fantasy tight ends. In two of the last three games, the Rams have allowed a 60-yard tight end. Coming off the bye week, the Cowboys had to find ways to get their tight ends going. Dak Prescott has always favored them, especially in the red zone. Ferguson is a start in week eight for lineups.
Cole Kmet, Bears- TE17
The fourth-year tight end is on my sit list this week. Cole Kmet is a lunchpail tight end that you can start, and he’ll give you something. He has struggled with Tayson Bagnet at quarterback. Kmet has two receptions on three targets and nine yards in two games. The matchup with the Chargers is also easy for Kmet, but it’s hard to trust him. Outside of Travis Kelce and TJ Hockenson, the Chargers have only allowed 104 to four other opposing tight ends and zero touchdowns. Bagnet isn’t allowed to throw the ball too much or downfield. When the Bears enter the red zone, it’s time to use the running backs. Kmet should be left on benches in week eight.
Taysom Hill, Saints- TE13
Taysom Hill has been on a tear the last two weeks with 11 receptions, 100 receiving yards, and a rushing touchdown. Hill is being used as a weapon. Juwan Johnson is set to return after missing most of the season due to a calf injury. Johnson proved last year that he belongs as a starting tight end. If Johnson is back, Hill could see a reduced role in the offense. Hill could be back down to 30% of the snaps compared to the 69% he showed in week seven. The Colts have allowed three tight ends over 40 yards with only one touchdown on the season. I get the upside that Hill can offer, but sitting at TE13 is high with the primary starter returning. Hill may disappoint in lineups this weekend.
Trey McBride, Cardinals – TE15
Second-year tight end Trey McBride is getting his chance at the starting lineup with Zach Ertz on the IR. Joshua Dobbs, as a quarterback, has been hard to trust for fantasy football as of late. Dobbs has been under 200 yards in two of the last three games. McBride has one of the worst matchups for tight ends this week. The Ravens allow the fewest fantasy points per game to tight ends this year. The Ravens have allowed just two tight ends over 40 yards this year with zero touchdowns. I’m concerned this Cardinals offense is regressing each week, and McBride won’t see quality targets in the offense. McBride, in his first start of 2023, should be a sit.