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Dynasty TE Signings from Free Agency

Were there any free agent gems in the TE market? @CoackStevenP takes a look at which new faces in new places can help your fantasy team.

Overall, the tight end class was not great once Dalton Schultz was re-signed from the Texans. We will review the class and see who you should keep your eyes on in trades to get great value for your team or move off your team.

Hunter Henry/Austin Hooper – Patriots

  • Hunter Henry – Three Years, $36 Million
  • Austin Hooper – One Year Deal

The Patriots have stayed true to the tight end they have preferred over the years in Hunter Henry. He re-signs with the team on a three-year-old. Henry has been productive as a Patriot, averaging 510 yards on 44 receptions with almost six touchdowns a season. He has dealt with other pass-catching tight ends, such as Jonnu Smith and Mike Gesicki. Henry has handled inadequate play over this tenure with the Patriots but has been the one bright spot among the pass catchers. At the moment, the Patriots still don’t have an elite WR1 on the team, so Henry has a chance to produce.

Henry should continue to be a middle-of-the-road TE2 that can be used during the bye weeks for contending teams. He’ll be a red zone threat for this team but likely won’t be consistent enough in fantasy to be a starter. He could be a decent buy-low option for contending teams, but that’s about it. Austin Hooper also signed as the TE2 for the Patriots. He hasn’t done much since leaving the Falcons back in 2019. He won’t have any real fantasy value in dynasty and will likely be on your waivers. Henry was a good signing for the Patriots to bring back a reliable option.

Noah Fant – Seattle

  • Noah Fant – Three Years, $27 Million
DETROIT, MI – OCTOBER 02: Seattle Seahawks tight end Noah Fant (87) runs with the ball after catching a pass while he tries to avoid being hit by Detroit Lions linebacker Alex Anzalone (34) during the second quarter of an NFL football game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Detroit Lions on October 2, 2022 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire)

Noah Fant is resigning with the Seattle Seahawks on a solid three-year deal. Fant was traded there a few years ago during the Russell Wilson trade. Fant’s time in Seattle has not been that great compared to his time in Denver. In Denver, he had three seasons of over 550 receiving yards and ten touchdowns. In the last two years in Seattle, he has been under 500 yards and just four touchdowns. I don’t like this signing for Fant since he hasn’t produced for this team before. The one change is that Colby Parkinson and Will Dissly have new teams. The Seahawks ran a three-man rotation where they all played high snaps on offense. The rotation limited Fant to average only 56% of the offensive snaps.

Even if Fant takes on more snaps in the offense, he still has three receivers on the team who all could command 80-plus targets in 2024 and beyond. They also have a strong run game that could limit the passing with a new coaching regime. They are decent signings for the Seahawks but not great for Fant’s dynasty value. He is kinda of a hold since you can’t sell, but if you can, I’d sell Fant in dynasty.

Colby Parkinson – Rams

  • Colby Parkinson – Three Years, $22.5 Million

This was strange as the Rams signed Parkinson to a decent three-year deal early on. Parkinson missed a lot of time in his early years with Seattle due to injuries but has done decent the last two years. He has 582 yards and three touchdowns in the previous two seasons. The biggest reason the Rams may have brought in Parkinson was his run blocking for the offense. He ranked tenth out of 91 tight ends at PFF. Parkinson is a big 6’7″, 251lb tight end that could be a red zone threat. Tyler Higbee is likely out for most of the 2024 season after tearing his ACL and MCL during the playoffs. Parkinson could easily come in and be the TE1 for this team. He is a big athlete tight end who can block well. You could easily pick him up off waiver right now and add him to your bench to see if he gets the job. This could prevent Davis Allen from taking the next step in his development. He has untapped potential, but this is not a great signing.

Jonnu Smith – Dolphins

  • Jonnu Smith – Two Years, $10 Million

This was a fun signing, as Jonnu Smith signed with the Miami Dolphins. Smith was released from the Falcons before the new season started, and the Dolphins quickly signed him. He had a bounce-back season in 2023 after two bad years with the Patriots. Smith would finish with 582 yards and three touchdowns. This was a big signing for the Dolphins since they desperately needed a more athlete-tight end who has receiving upside. They tried with Durham Smythe, but he is a solid blocker. The Dolphins were last in targets to their tight end last season.

Smith has an upside in his receiving game and can produce yards after the catch. He was 8th in YAC yards and had some versatility that can be useful in the Dolphin’s offense. This could be a decent buy-in dynasty right now, even after signing with the Dolphins. Based on what I’m seeing in leagues, Smith’s signing raises his value much. He could put up similar numbers as in 2023 but on an offense that likes to get their players in open space. You could still get Smith for a couple of third-round picks.

Mike Gesicki/Drew Sample/Tanner Hudson – Bengals

  • Mike Gesicki – One Year Deal
  • Drew Sample – Three Years, $10.5 Million
  • Mike Gesicki – One Year Deal

The Bengals bring in an athlete type of tight end on a one-year deal in Mike Gesicki. Drew Sample re-signed on a three-year deal. Sample doesn’t have any value but is an elite pass-blocking tight end and a very good run-blocking tight end. Last year, the Bengals tried out Irv Smith, and that failed. Gesicki is still looking to find the success he had back in the 2020 and 2021 seasons. He had 700 yards in back-to-back years. In the last two seasons, Gesicki has regressed, and signing with the Patriots the previous year was a big mistake. Gesicki wasn’t close to a good tight end, as he seemed to disappear too often.

The Bengals have had decent success in Joe Burrow’s tenure so far. The Bengals starting tight end has had at least 50 targets in the last three seasons. It’s hard to want to trust Gesicki since he isn’t much of a blocker and could lose playing time because of it. The team could be without Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd this offseason, so Gesicki could get more opportunity in the slot with the need for weapons. In dynasty, I’m using this to sell off Gesicki for whatever I can get now that he is attached for a Bengals offense in 2024.

Irv Smith Jr – Chiefs

  • Irv Smith Jr. – One Year Deal

Irv Smith is getting another chance with a high-power offense, but it is not much of a needle-pusher for me. The Chiefs have Travis Kelce and a solid backup in Noah Gray. Smith is likely on waivers, but if you want him in a trade, then do so. He has over 200 yards in back-to-back seasons. Overall, it’s not that great of a signing.

Will Dissly/Hayden Hurst – Chargers

  • Will Dissly – Three Years, $14 Million
  • Hayden Hurst – One Year Deal

The Chargers brought in new tight ends to compete for the starting job. The team also has big play guy Donald Parham, but they have never trusted him with the starting job for long. Will Dissly joins the team due to his ability as a blocker. He was second on PFF with run and pass blocking in 2023. Folks forget that Dissly flashed in his first two years in the league. In his first ten NFL games, Dissly had 31 receptions for 418 yards and six touchdowns. Unfortunately, he had two nasty season-ending injuries those years. Dissly would be in a rotation for the next four seasons. He is likely on waivers and could be worth stashing until the NFL draft to see what the Chargers do. Dissly could be a deep sleeper for dynasty leagues in 2024.

Dissly will have some competition with Hayden Hurst also signing with the team but on a one-year deal. Hurst is still looking for the glory of the 2020 season, where he finished with over 500 yards and six touchdowns. He was a major bust for the Panthers, who they signed for on a three-year deal. Hurst was cut after one season with the team. He is an athletic tight end but an average one at best. Hurst is a good sell-off to an owner who believes players attached to Justin Herbert will all thrive in fantasy.

Gerald Everett – Bears

  • Gerald Everett – Two Years, $12 Million
KANSAS CITY, MO – SEPTEMBER 15: Los Angeles Chargers tight end Gerald Everett (7) during a 26-yard reception in the fourth quarter of an NFL game between the Los Angeles Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs on September 15, 2022 at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, MO. Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire)

Gerald Everett’s signing with the Bears is strange for his dynasty value. He has a history with offensive coordinator Shane Waldron from their time in LA together. Everett won’t be coming in as the starting tight end since the team has Cole Kmet locked up on a long-term deal. The team also has DJ Moore and Keenan Allen as their top two pass catchers. They have a great pass-catching running back in D’Andre Swift as well. Everett has been solid over the last five years, with at least 400 yards each season. He is an athletic tight end, but the opportunity will be huge. I don’t see Everett having much value in dynasty with the Bears. You could try to sell off, but his value dropped with this signing.

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