Tight ends continue to make a difference in fantasy football every week. While Jimmy Graham was on his bye week, Rob Gronkowski returned, and the show was stolen by Jordan Reed. Reed is a great pickup option, to be sure, but there are other options if you don’t have the waiver priority to land him.
Here are my top 5 options avilable in over half of ESPN leagues. The ESPN ownership percentage is in parentheses for each selection and all scoring references are to ESPN standard scoring. If your league scores differently, adjust accordingly.
If you have a team-specific question drop it in the comments at the bottom of the page or find me @ZT_Sports on twitter, and I’ll do my best to help you out with your roster calls.
1. Jordan Reed-Washington Redskins (4.0%)
Reed went off last week for 134 yards and a touchdown on nine catches against the Bears. Reed has been targeted all season, so as long as he can stay on the field he should stay a big part of Washington’s passing attack. Robert Griffin III looks like he’s rounding into form which should keep Reed fantasy relevant for the rest of the season which is even more valuable since they’re past their bye. Reed and the ‘Skins will need plenty of offense to offset their defensive deficiencies, so look for big production going forward.
2. Heath Miller-Pittsburgh Steelers (21.7%)
Miller found the endzone for the first time this season last week in his fourth game of the season. He and Big Ben have a great connection and he’ll get plenty of passes thrown his way most weeks. His opponents this week, the Raiders, have been good against the tight end, but Miller is still a great long-term option based on his track record of fantasy production.
3. Charles Clay-Miami Dolphins (43.6%)
Clay has a longer and more consistent track record, but only had one catch last week. Fortunately for Clay’s owners, it was a touchdown catch so he still turned in a solid number. Clay has found the end zone in four of his last five games and continues to be a big part of Ryan Tannehill’s passing attack. This week he faces the Patriots defense which has been ravaged by injury, but has still managed to perform pretty well.
4. Coby Fleener-Indianapolis Colts (31.0%)
Fleener has been growing into the tight end role in the Colts offense since Dwayne Allen’s season-ending injury, and now he may be asked to step into an even bigger role with Reggie Wayne also suffering a season-ending injury. Fleener hasn’t had many big yardage games, but he has been a target in the red zone and has the potential to be a low-end TE1 in the right matchups. This week, he’s not on option since the Colts are on a bye, but he’s a good pickup if you need help later in the season with bye weeks.
5. Rob Housler-Arizona Cardinals (0.5%)
A deep sleeper, Housler had his best game of the season against the Seahawks last Thursday catching seven passes for 53 yards. He got some preseason buzz as a sleeper since he’s in an offense that should give him opportunities, but he had struggled with injury early in the season. The last two weeks he’s totaled 11 catches for 85 yards, but there’s lots of potential if you need an option in your ultra-deep league.
This list of TE’s is part of my weekly waiver wire focus. If you need further help constructing your team, check out my top ten waiver wire picks of the week as well as my top waiver targets at each of the following positions: QB, RB, WR, D/ST.