The tight end position is one of the most difficult positions to evaluate for dynasty fantasy football. It is one of the shallowest positions in all of football. Very few players provide a consistent boost for a fantasy manager year in and year out at this position. However, it is also true that the teams that have one of those unicorns have a significant advantage over the competition. In recent years players like Travis Kelce, Greg Olsen, Rob Gronkowski, Zach Ertz, and a few others have routinely carried dynasty managers to their championships. In this article, I give you five tight ends you should buy for your squads. Some are bargains and some are expensive but hopefully, all will help your teams on the road to championship success.
First up on my list of tight end buys is Denver Broncos starter Greg Dulcich. The youngster has burst onto the scene in his first year in the league. The former UCLA Bruin is a third-round pick of the Broncos. He made an immediate impact on his new team, scoring a touchdown in his first regular season game. He has a nice athletic profile for the modern NFL tight end, as you can see below.
You can see from his spider graph above that the main area Dulcich is lacking is strength. This is alright since we are more concerned with his pass-catching than his blocking. He has supplanted former 4th-round pick Albert Okwuegbunam as the starter following the trade of Noah Fant. Dulcich should have a chance to grow with an aging signal-caller in Russell Wilson who will theoretically look to dump the ball off in the intermediate as he naturally cuts back on his scrambling.
The best part about Dulcich is his price. When searching through our Dynasty Nerds trade finder I have seen him go for as little as a 3rd & 4th round pick. I have also seen him moved by simply moving back from a 2023 pick to a 2024 pick. For my money, Greg Dulcich is a decent tight end to buy on the cheaper end if you are a team beginning your rebuild. He has shown enough to be hopeful for a long-term play at the position.
Daniel Jones to Daniel Bellinger for a Giants touchdown!!! pic.twitter.com/JxDewDybhZ— Bobby Skinner (@BobbySkinner_) October 16, 2022
My second player on this list is a fellow rookie who may have already been forgotten in some league circles, Daniel Bellinger. The New York Giants fourth-round pick out of San Diego State was thrust into the starting lineup out of necessity early in the year. None of the journeyman players brought in to take over for the departed Evan Engram was able to hold off the youngster and he found his way into the lineup. You can see from his profile below that he has some nice intangibles for the position.
To his credit, Bellinger came in and immediately began to make plays for Daniel Jones and the Giants. New head coach Brian Daboll said of Bellinger, “He’s got a knack for getting open, finding space, and making key plays for us.”. Bellinger was making plays in the running game and the passing game scoring three total touchdowns before going down in Week 7 with a gruesome eye injury. This particular injury required surgery. His absence from the field has caused some owners to forget about the talented youngster. When searching our Dynasty Nerds trade calculator you can see him go for as little as a third-round pick.
At that price, I am buying Bellinger in a Tight End Premium league. He has the trust of his coach and his quarterback, indicating that his future is bright in the Big Apple once he returns from his eye injury.
David Njoku with the big catch for six!— Elite Media Group (@TheEliteMedia_) September 23, 2022
My next tight end buy is a player that will cost you more than a mid-round pick. Cleveland tight end David Njoku is one of my absolute favorite buys at the position. The former University of Miami star has taken some time to develop in Cleveland following his selection in the first round of the 2017 draft. But he has. He has shown some incremental improvement nearly every season before being re-signed this past offseason to a nice contract. He has rewarded the Browns with some of his best play to date. You can see his freakish athletic profile below when he came out at just 20 years old.
Njoku was certainly enjoying the best start to a season in his career during early 2022. His season was however put on hold when he suffered an ankle injury in Week 7. Despite not playing in the last two games due to injury, and sitting in his bye week, Njoku still finds himself as the TE14 on the season. In PPR leagues he has the sixth highest average score per week on the season among tight ends. When searching for trades involving the former first-round pick, his price is around the second-round pick price area.
There are a couple of reasons David Njoku is a screaming buy for your dynasty squads. First is his age. He is currently only 26 years old. That youth also comes with a ton of experience at six years in the league.
Secondly, the Browns will welcome their new franchise quarterback, Deshaun Watson, to the field. He should be a boon to the team overall, particularly the scoring department. The sheer amount of draft capital the Browns spent in acquiring Watson also means they lack the high-end picks to add a ton of receivers to the mix.
Before going down with an injury, Njoku had a 34/418/1 stat line on the season. That was with Jacoby Brissett at the helm. I expect Njoku to thrive with former Pro Bowl signal-caller Deshaun Watson leading the team. Njoku and Amari Cooper will likely lead the way for the foreseeable future. Get your hands on Njoku before he and Watson get to team up.
Mike Gesicki went UP for the TD 🛫pic.twitter.com/iNHIWTL84n— Pro Football Network (@PFN365) September 18, 2022
The next tight end I would like to highlight for this article is former Penn State star Mike Gesicki. The Miami Dolphins’ former second-round pick has enjoyed an up-and-down career since finding his way to South Beach. Heading into the 2022 season Gesicki had managed to improve across the board in nearly every season. However, there has been some question about his fit in the new Head Coach Mike McDaniel’s system. As things currently stand Gesicki is TE17 on the year. Despite the immense athleticism he has displayed which you can see on the spider graph below.
While Gesicki is certainly struggling in 2022 there is a silver lining. Despite the down numbers he appears to be on pace for a career-high in touchdowns. He should also be on the top of the free agent tight end groups ahead of the 2023 campaign. This means the talented pass catcher will have a chance to select a team that better fits his talents and skill set. Several teams will be interested in a player of his size and speed. A search of the Dynasty Nerds trade finder shows that Gesicki can be had for surprisingly little. Despite being a multi-year TE1 he is going for anywhere from a second to a fourth and a throw-in player.
Gesicki is a player I’m buying with an eye toward next season. Sure it’s possible he could get hot down the stretch. But with Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle hogging all the looks, it’s tough to see a path to true relevance. It is definitely worth checking in with the Gesicki owner in your league to see if they have lost faith.
The last tight end I would like to cover for this article is Rams starter, Tyler Higbee. The former Western Kentucky Hilltopper has been a quality player ever since being selected in the 4th round of the 2016 draft. Over the last six years, he has established himself as the lead pass catcher in the tight end room for the Rams. At only 29 years old he also has plenty of gas left in the tank. Higbee boasts an upper-echelon athletic profile which you can see below.
With the recent development around the injury to teammate Cooper Kupp, the Rams are without their top pass catcher. Higbee will likely represent a safety blanket to Matthew Stafford. The two have a great connection and Higbee operates in the same area of the field as Kupp. Higbee is currently the TE6 overall on the season. With the injuries to Dallas Goedert and Zach Ertz, he will likely finish as a top 5 tight end on the season. Higbee also comes at a decent price.
As you can see above Higbee’s price is likely somewhere between a 2nd and third-round pick. That is an excellent price for a player who offers top 5 upside at his position the rest of the way. Given his cost, opportunity, and age, he is my #1 buy for contending teams.
Dynasty is a game of timing. It is always important to consider where your team is in relation to the rest of your league. Some teams are looking for players to rebuild with. Others are looking for cornerstone pieces to finish off a rebuild. While yet others are just looking for players to rent in an effort to push them over the top. There are usually plenty of owners willing to sell players for future picks. These are just a handful of the players I would be willing to invest in at the tight end position. Perhaps you like these players? Perhaps you have other targets. The main idea is to constantly be on the lookout for how to improve your squads. Stagnant teams rarely win, and trading is one of the main areas that make dynasty the amazing game that it is.
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