In the ongoing saga that is many fantasy owners worst nightmare, Gronk is looking less likely to play this week as gametime draws closer. If you have Gronk, you’re used to patching together your TE position, but you may not be the only owner looking for a new starter this week. Tony Gonzalez and Charles Clay are both on a bye, and you may find yourself looking for an emergency starter at TE.
Based on their matchup for this week, here are five options that aren’t weekly starters who are in a good place to play for you this week as needed.
1. Heath Miller-Pittsburgh Steelers
Miller looks ready to contribute with just two games under his belt this season. He looked back in form and playing a vital role for Big Ben in the Steelers last game which was in London. Last week, the Steelers had a bye, but in his last game he caught six passes for 70 yards while being targeted eight times. This week, he’ll match up against the Jets who are on a short week after allowing 112 yards to Tony Gonzalez on Monday Night Football. They’ve let the opposing TE score a touchdown in each of their last three games.
2. Jeff Cumberland-New York Jets
Cumberland has found the end zone in each of the last two weeks and is coming off a season-high 79 yards against the Falcons. This week, he’ll face the Steelers which isn’t a great matchup, but with Kellen Winslow suspended and Santonio Holmes sidelined he should get some looks from Geno Smith this week. He leads TE in yards per reception and YAC although he only has seven catches on the season.
3. Garrett Graham-Houston Texans
Graham is the starting TE for the Texans and will get all the TE looks in the near future with Owen Daniels out for several weeks with a fractured fibula. Graham didn’t do much in his first game atop the depth chart while Houston was getting crushed by the 49ers. This week, he should fare better as St. Louis comes to visit and the Texans try to figure out their shaky QB situation. Matt Schaub desperately needs a bounce back outing and using Graham would be a great way for him to do that.
4. Sean McGrath-Kansas City Chiefs
McGrath continues to produce as he’s emerged as one of Alex Smith’s favorite weapons. The Chiefs TE has caught 13 of the 15 throws his way the last three weeks for a total of 13 catches, 149 yards, and a touchdown. He’ll face Oakland this week who has allowed over 40 yards to opposing tight ends in each of the last four weeks and over 65 the last two. McGrath is worth a look since he’s developed such a connection with Alex Smith
5. Brandon Pettigrew-Detroit Lions
After a rough start to the season, Pettigrew has put together two solid games going over 50 yards in each game since the Lions lost WR Nate Burleson as a target. He has 11 catches over that span for 113 yards. This week he faces the Browns who are pretty good against opposing TE, but Matthew Stafford looks committed to passing him the ball regularly, so you could do much worse with a starting TE than the hulking Lion.
If you have any questions about who I’d start/sit for week 6, you can find me on twitter @ZT_Sports or drop the question in the comments at the bottom of the page. For information on other positions, starter rankings, waiver wire pickups, and plenty of fantasy football goodness, check out our Fansided fantasy football page where there’s a treasure trove of information that can help you get the win this weekend.