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Fantasy Football Rankings: Tight Ends in Week 16

Heath explores the big guys for championship week.

Miami Dolphins v Buffalo Bills
Buffalo’s top receiver is only 32% owned in the fake game.
Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

It is championship week in smart leagues, so yours truly is getting the first pass out as soon as possible this week. Let’s get this thing right before showtime, eh?

The position’s elite have some downright CHEESE matchups this week, and all of them are at home, too. You can’t go wrong with Gronk, Kelce, Ertz, or Olsen this week.

Hunter Henry has a lacerated kidney so his status for this weekend is “uncertain.” I am no doctor, but it sounds like you should explore other options if Henry was your guy. Charles Clay, Jesse James, and Eric Ebron are all under 50% owned in Yahoo and make for quality replacements at this juncture of the NFL season. ***Update*** Hunter Henry is OUT for the rest of the season. Antonio Gates is a scoring-dependent TE2 for Week 16.

Kyle Rudolph suffered an ankle injury last week but he did return and catch a score, which salvaged his day. I am a little bearish on him for Week 16. Disclaimer: I was bearish on Greg Olsen last week, too. Olsen also played Green Bay, who chose to blitz like madmen and not worry about the tight end. Maybe the Packers (like me) were expecting nothing from Olsen. Anyway, this is an intriguing matchup since the Packers were stingy against tight ends all season. Rudolph checks in as a lower-end TE1 this week.

Jesse James is still a legitimate option for me. He came down in a big way from his massive Week 14, but he did score a touchdown in Week 15. It’s not his fault the zebras didn’t rule it a touchdown. Last week I even wrote that he was due for a’s all my fault, isn’t it?

O.J. Howard left the Monday Night game in a walking boot, which means Cameron Brate is the last man standing for Tampa Bay. Really, DeSean Jackson went down as well. Brate has a rough tilt against Carolina, but he has some scoring upside working for him. ***Update*** O.J. Howard is likely headed to IR, which means Brate is a legitimate TE1 option in Week 16.

Adam Shaheen is another big piece of injury news, since he missed Week 15 with a chest injury (one he sustained in Week 14). If he practices for the majority of the week he would make a legitimate TE2 candidate. If he does not practice I will have a difficult time hitching my proverbial wagon to Dion Sims, who the Bears love to use as a blocker.

The Dolphins placed Julius Thomas on injured reserve, which means Anthony Fasano is the new low-floor, low-ceiling option in that offense. Expect Kenyan Drake and Jarvis Landry to “eat” a little bit more over the next two weeks instead of Fasano becoming a TE1 option.

That’s it for the first pass. Since I am getting this out early I will update with pertinent news later on in the week. Cheers to all those who are still in contention this week.

Week 16 Tight End Rankings

1 Rob Gronkowski vs. BUF
2 Travis Kelce vs. MIA
3 Zach Ertz vs. OAK
4 Delanie Walker vs. LAR
5 Greg Olsen vs. TB
6 Evan Engram @ ARI
7 Jimmy Graham @ DAL
8 Jack Doyle @ BAL
9 Eric Ebron @ CIN
10 Cameron Brate @ CAR
11 Kyle Rudolph @ GB
12 Charles Clay @ NE
13 Jesse James @ HOU
14 Benjamin Watson vs. IND
15 Jared Cook @ PHI
16 Vernon Davis vs. DEN
17 Ricky Seals-Jones vs. NYG
18 Jason Witten vs. SEA
19 Antonio Gates @ NYJ
20 Austin Hooper @ NO
21 Tyler Kroft vs. DET
22 Garrett Celek vs. JAC
23 David Njoku @ CHI
24 Stephen Anderson vs. PIT
25 Trey Burton vs. OAK
26 Anthony Fasano @ KC
27 Austin Seferian-Jenkins vs. LAC
28 George Kittle vs. JAC
29 Seth DeValve @ CHI
30 Marcedes Lewis @ SF
31 Josh Hill vs. ATL
32 Tyler Higbee @ TEN