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Fantasy football rankings: Tight ends in Week 1

Heath gives you the Top 32 safety blankets for Week 1.

NFL: Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans
A plush matchup for one of Mariota’s most familiar targets awaits in Week 1.
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Week 1 is here!

I will be posting standard league tight end rankings every Wednesday, so be sure to circle back each time.

My “philosophy” is to never downgrade Rob Gronkowski if I can help it. I have done so in the past and been burned by a low-yardage, multiple-score game. I have learned my lesson.

I also believe Travis Kelce is the top of the next tier, and not in a tier with Gronk. Therefore, when he has a tough matchup I will treat him like everyone else. If the Chiefs prove me wrong and decide they want to force-feed targets his way, I will adjust accordingly. But I do not expect that to happen, and for this week I expect Kelce to draw the vast majority of New England’s attention. Good luck with that, Kelce.

Kyle Rudolph and Zach Ertz have fantastic matchups. I expect them to “eat.” Meaning, I would take either of them over Kelce. Come at me.

I like Austin Hooper’s chances quite a bit. At a certain point with tight ends, you are just fishing for a touchdown. Hooper has as good a chance as any to be productive in that regard.

Jermaine Gresham is a cheap guy you could use if you need a low-end TE2 option. Or a value play on DraftKings, even. I have not checked his salary there, but I am sure it is close to the minimum (if not the minimum). The Lions have been dreadful against tight ends in recent memory and the Cardinals are not swimming in passing game options. Gresham should do enough to warrant a look this week.

As always, feel free to haggle with me in the comments. I welcome your conversations.

Week 1 Tight End Rankings

Rank Name Opponent
Rank Name Opponent
1 Rob Gronkowski vs. KC
2 Greg Olsen @ SF
3 Delanie Walker vs. OAK
4 Zach Ertz @ WAS
5 Kyle Rudolph vs. NO
6 Travis Kelce @ NE
7 Jordan Reed vs. PHI
8 Jimmy Graham @ GB
9 Martellus Bennett vs. SEA
10 Tyler Eifert vs. BAL
11 Hunter Henry @ DEN
12 Austin Hooper @ CHI
13 Jason Witten vs. NYG
14 Charles Clay vs. NYJ
15 Coby Fleener @ MIN
16 Eric Ebron vs. ARI
17 Zach Miller vs. ATL
18 Antonio Gates @ DEN
19 Jack Doyle @ LAR
20 C.J. Fiedorowicz vs. JAC
21 Jermaine Gresham @ DET
22 Evan Engram @ DAL
23 Dwayne Allen vs. KC
24 Jared Cook @ TEN
25 Jesse James @ CLE
26 Benjamin Watson @ CIN
27 Tyler Higbee vs. IND
28 Vance McDonald @ CLE
29 David Njoku vs. PIT
30 Vernon Davis vs. PHI
31 Dion Sims vs. ATL
32 Ryan Griffin vs. JAC