Fantasy TE Rankings Week 5: Who to start, sit at tight end in fantasy football



We might as well just rewrite the same intro every week for tight ends. Outside of a handful of guys, you would’ve been better off starting a good number of kickers over some tight ends last week. Ranking tight ends is always challenging, and we’re getting more aggressive with our Week 5 fantasy TE rankings, putting some steamer-level guys close to the top 10 based on matchups and early-season breakouts. After all, matchups and the possibility of scoring a touchdown is often the difference in your decision of who to start and who to sit, especially in standard leagues.

That said, our top four of Kelce, Waller, Hockenson, and Kittle could probably just stay the same each week, especially before bye weeks and injuries. Regardless of matchups, these are the true top dogs at the position even though many owners have been disappointed with Kittle this year (and Hockenson the past two weeks). They’re still getting big targets, though, so it’s only a matter of time for they go off. Kyle Pitts (vs. NYJ) was supposed to be among the elites of the position but hasn’t delivered. Still, it’s hard to bench him with the assumed ceiling he has and the targets he’s getting. Tight ends take time to develop, and a matchup with the Jets in London could be a good time to break out.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

Potential streamers Austin Hooper (@ Chargers), Dallas Goedert (@ Panthers), and Pat Freiermuth (vs. Broncos) don’t look all that appealing this week, as each of their matchups have been solid against tight ends this year. None of the three have shown enough to be labeled “matchup-proof” in any sense of the phrase. Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith (@ Texans) look like they have good matchups, but let’s face it, Smith has been a flat-out bust and Henry was trending that way before last week, so they still come with risks.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | D/ST | Kicker

Dawson Knox (@ Chiefs), Mike Gesicki (@ Buccaneers), Tyler Conklin (vs. Lions), and Dalton Schultz (vs. Giants) are much more attractive streamers this week. Each has easy matchups or their team will likely be playing from behind for most of their games. Fantasy points still count in garage time, no matter how happy or mad that makes you. You could throw Evan Engram (@ Cowboys) into this group as well, but he’s disappointed two weeks in a row despite significant WR injuries, so we’re not sure you can ever trust him. 

There is one positive about the tight end position. It’s stayed relatively healthy so far — that is, until Logan Thomas (hamstring) missed most of last week. Ricky Seals-Jones (vs. Saints) is an interesting streamer, but with a statistically difficult matchup, he probably isn’t worth the trouble this week.  

The byes begin next week, so streaming will be essential. Watch this group with a keen eye. Tight end breakouts can come out of nowhere, as we’ve seen Maxx Williams (vs. 49ers), C.J. Uzomah (vs. Packers), Juwan Johnson (@ Washington), Conklin, and Knox have top-10 weeks this season.

We’ll be updating these TE rankings as needed throughout the week, so check back for the latest changes and analysis.

Fantasy TE Rankings Week 5: Who to start at tight end

Rankings based on standard, non-PPR scoring

Rank Player
1 Travis Kelce, KC vs. BUF
2 Darren Waller, LV vs. CHI
3 T.J. Hockenson, DET @ MIN
4 George Kittle, SF @ ARI
5 Noah Fant, DEN @ PIT. This is a tough matchup on paper, but Fant commanded ten targets against the Ravens, and that alone keeps him a top option at the position.
6 Dawson Knox, BUF @ KC. Knox has scored four touchdowns in the past three weeks and is finally breaking out in one of the league’s best offenses. Kansas City is a bottom-five defense in the league, so Knox has every opportunity to be a top-ten tight end once again.
7 Mike Gesicki, MIA @ TB. Jacoby Brissett apparently loves Gesicki, so we should, too.  He’s averaged eight targets/game with Brissett at the helm and got in the endzone in Week 4 against the Colts. Tampa Bay allowed Kyle Pitts to rack up 73 yards and Tyler Higbee, Jonnu Smith, and Hunter Henry to score touchdowns, The matchup is favorable here.
8 Kyle Pitts, ATL vs. NYJ. The Jets’ defense has yet to allow any TE to go over 45 yards and has allowed zero touchdowns to the position. That said, they haven’t played any top-notch tight ends outside of Noah Fant. Still, Pitts’ breakout game has to be coming, and an early game in London might be just the spot to do it. Be aware of the bust potential here.
9 Dalton Schultz, DAL vs. NYG. The Giants’ defense has been up and down, but they’ve been more than willing to let tight ends score fantasy points. They’ve given up touchdowns to Lee Smith, Albert Okwuegbunam, and Ricky Seals-Jones through four games, so they’ve obviously had trouble defending the position in scoring opportunities. This season, Schultz has caught 20-of-23 targets for 201 yards and three touchdowns. He’s been productive in this elite offense and should continue his run against New York.
10 Mark Andrews, BAL vs. IND. Andrews hasn’t been a top-tier tight end this year like we had hoped, but had a nice day in Week 4 vs. Denver with five catches for 67 yards. He’s a solid play this week, but we like the guys above him with higher ceilings more. We’ll see if the possible return of Rashod Bateman (core) will help or hurt Andrews in fantasy.
11 Tyler Higbee, LAR @ SEA. Higbee drew six targets in Week 4, catching four of them for 36 yards. He did get one endzone target but dropped it. It was a down week, but Seattle’s defense is porous and Stafford likes to use him in the red zone after looking for Cooper Kupp. That said, he’s always going to have touchdown potential, and if this turns into a shootout, he could produce his best fantasy day yet.
12 Tyler Conklin, MIN vs. DET. Conklin failed to put two productive performances in a row together, but he still drew six targets. Detroit allows the ninth-most points to tight ends, so Conklin is a top streamer option this week.
13 Dallas Goedert, PHI @ CAR. Goedert caught five-of-five targets for 56 yards and a touchdown against Kansas City, but Carolina figures to be a much tougher matchup. Also, Zach Ertz has now out-targetted him in two straight weeks. That said, even though Goedert has been productive, Zach Ertz just won’t go away. This raises some concern for the rest of the season.
14 Hunter Henry, NE @ HOU. Henry and Jonnu Smith both showed signs of life in Week 4 as they both received five targets and scored a touchdown. However, Henry is trending toward being the primary tight end and goes a notch ahead of Smith for now. This will probably be a fluid situation so stay tuned. They both have a chance at solid production against a starved-for-talent Houston defense.
15 Robert Tonyan Jr., GB @ CIN. Tonyan is what we thought he was — touchdown dependant. He’ll be targetted in the red zone, which is the only reason he’s viewed as anything more than an unrestorable player.
16 Jonnu Smith, NE @ HOU. See Hunter Henry.
17 Zach Ertz, PHI @ CAR. See Dallas Goedert.
18 Jared Cook, LAC vs. CLE
19 Austin Hooper, CLE @ LAC
20 Evan Engram, NYG @ DAL
21 Cameron Brate, TB vs. MIA
22 Ricky Seals-Jones, WAS vs. NO
23 Gerald Everett, SEA vs. LAR
24 Pat Freiermuth, PIT vs. DEN
25 C.J. Uzomah, CIN vs. GB
26 Maxx Williams, ARI vs. SF
27 Juwan Johnson, NO @ WAS
28 Mo Alie-Cox, IND @ BAL
29 Jack Doyle, IND @ BAL
30 Blake Jarwin, DAL vs. NYJ
31 Ryan Griffin, NYJ vs. ATL
32 Cole Kmet, CHI @ LV
33 David Njoku, CLE @ LAC
34 Hayden Hurst, ATL vs. NYJ
35 Adam Trautman, NO @ WAS
36 Albert Okwuegbunam, DEN @ PIT
37 O.J. Howard, TB vs. MIA
38 Eric Ebron, PIT vs. DEN
39 Pharaoh Brown, HOU vs. NE
40 Anthony Firkser, TEN vs. JAX
41 Jimmy Graham, CHI @ LV
42 Will Dissly, SEA vs. LAR


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