Oct 13, 2013; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick (27) tackles Buffalo Bills tight end Scott Chandler (84) during the second half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bengals beat the Bills 27-24 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy Football Week 8 Sleepers: Top 5 Emergency TEs to Start

Oct 13, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph (82) catches a pass as Carolina Panthers safety Quintin Mikell (27) tackles him in the second quarter at Mall of America Field at H.H.H. Metrodome. Panthers win 35-10. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy tight end can be both a vital and a volatile position with turnover in contributors each week. There are several solid TEs on byes and others like Jimmy Graham that may not be ready this week due to injury. These players are outside the top ten in most rankings but in good matchups for this weekend and can be used in your lineup if you’re in a pinch. They have sleeper potential if you need an emergency plug-and-play although they all do carry a degree of risk.

1. Kyle Rudolph-Minnesota Vikings

Rudolph hasn’t been able to put together a consistent season mostly because of continual change at quarterback. This week he gets back the QB that made him successful last season as Christian Ponder returns under center. He’s been up and down all year, but I think with Ponder back he’ll have a solid Sunday Night Football game against the Packers who allow the third-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends.

2. Brandon Pettigrew-Detroit Lions

Oct 20, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions tight end Brandon Pettigrew (87) runs after making a catch during the first quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Pettigrew has a bit of an injury that cropped up in the middle of the week, but as long as he plays he makes a nice sleeper pick. He had a down week last week, but was targeted seven times last week even though he only managed three catches for seven yards. He did get a touchdown last week for his first score of the season. The Cowboys have been beaten by opposing tight ends this season allowing the fourth-most points per game to them although they have fared a bit better lately.

3. Rob Housler-Arizona Cardinals

Housler hauled in seven passes last week catching every target thrown his way finishing with 53 yards. In the last two weeks, he has had 11 catches for 85 yards and is starting to grow into a bigger and bigger role in the Cardinals passing game. He takes on the Falcons defense this week who has allowed touchdowns to opposing tight ends in three of their last four games.

4. Scott Chandler-Buffalo Bills

Chandler is up and down in his production basd on his assignment for the week. If the Bills are behind, he catches more passes, but if they’re close he tends to block more and catch passes less. Last week he only had two catches for 18 yards, but had several more successful games before that. This week, he’ll probably be forced into a more active role in the offense as the Bills try and keep up with the Saints in New Orleans. Chandler is a big, effective redzone target so can be used even in this tough matchup if you want to roll the dice.

5. Anthony Fasano-Kansas City Chiefs

Fasano came back to the lineup last week and was plugged right into the lineup finishing with four catches for 27 yards and getting stopped just short of the goal line twice. This week, he and Alex Smith take on the Browns who are in the middle of the pack against opposing fantasy tight ends but have allowed four TD’s to tight ends in the last three games. Fasano’s a long shot but could find the end zone this week and have a growing role in the Chiefs passing attack.

If you have any questions about who I’d start/sit for week 8, 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 insight, check out our Fansided fantasy football page.


Tags: Arizona Cardinals Buffalo Bills Detroit Lions Fantasy Football Sleepers Fantasy Football TE Kansas City Chiefs Minnesota Vikings NFL Week 8

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