Saturday, October 16, 2021

Week 6 Fantasy Football TE Start'em, Sit'em

The decision on which player to start, or sit, largely comes down to the options on your roster (and/or possibly the players available on your league's waiver wire).

As an example, Dawson Knox is listed below as a "start" for Week 6. And I'd certainly be comfortable going into Week 6 with him as my starting tight end.

Then again, Knox may be a "sit" for your team.

In other words, if you roster both Travis Kelce and Knox, you should start Kelce and, in turn, bench Knox.

For a more direct answer on whether we would start Player X over Player Y, check our Week 6 Fantasy Football Rankings. Instead of making those direct comparisons, the goal here is to highlight players that we like, or dislike, for the week.

Week 6 Fantasy Football TE Start'em

Dawson Knox, Buffalo Bills (at TEN)

The former Ole Miss tight end is having a breakout season. Other than Travis Kelce and Mark Andrews, no tight end has scored more fantasy points this season than Knox.

Targeted only four times against the Kansas City Chiefs last week, Knox had three catches for 117 yards and a touchdown. That performance extended Knox's streak of games with a score and top-12 weekly finishes to four weeks in a row. During that stretch, he has finished as fantasy's TE11, TE8, TE2 and TE4, respectively.

Once again, the Bills have one of the week's highest implied totals. While the Tennessee Titans have been one of the stingiest defenses to opposing tight ends, Knox remains one of the top options at the position this week.

Hunter Henry, New England Patriots (vs. DAL)

While preseason ADPs meant that Jonnu Smith was off the board before Hunter Henry in the majority of fantasy football drafts, Henry has emerged as the team's TE1 over Smith.

Targets and target shares may not be very different between Henry (26, 13.9%) and Smith (23, 12.3%), but Henry has done much more with his targets. Henry has turned his 26 targets into 20 catches for 216 yards (10.8 Y/R) and two touchdowns.

Meanwhile, the Cowboys have allowed the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season.

Mike Gesicki, Miami Dolphins (at JAX)

Since being a complete non-factor in Week 1, Gesicki has a minimum of three catches, six targets and 41 yards in four consecutive games. During that four-game span, he has a total of 22 catches (third-most among TEs), 31 targets (third-most), 227 yards (fifth-most) and a touchdown.

Given the injuries to the receiving corps, Gesicki should remain heavily involved in the passing game in a plus matchup this weekend. The Jacksonville Jaguars have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season.

Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys (at NE)

Entering Week 6, Schultz has scored the fourth-most fantasy points among tight ends regardless of scoring format. While his weekly upside isn't very high, his week-to-week consistency has exceeded all expectations. The former Stanford Cardinal has exactly six receptions in three consecutive games and in four of five games this season.

The Patriots are top four at limiting opposing tight ends in fantasy points. As the Patriots focus their defensive efforts on slowing the Cowboys running game or their talented wideouts (Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb), Schultz should once again be the recipient of plenty of targets from Dak Prescott to keep his fantasy floor high.

Week 6 Fantasy Football TE Sit'em

Robert Tonyan, Green Bay Packers (at CHI)

The Chicago Bears are one of the eight most difficult matchups for opposing tight ends this season. Given Tonyan's relative lack of involvement in the offense, those that drafted him as a back-end TE1 can no longer trust him in their lineups even in easy matchups.

Tonyan has eight receiving yards (or less) in four of five games this season. After a hyper-efficient 88.1% catch rate in 2020, Tonyan has a career-low 52.9% catch rate and is averaging only 4.8 yards per target, also a career low.

Jonnu Smith, New England Patriots (vs. DAL)

As noted above, Smith's target share isn't much different than Henry. That said, the tight end tandem hasn't been much of a dynamic duo.

Smith has parlayed his 23 targets into a 15/115/1 stat line. His 7.7 Y/R is the lowest of his career. The Cowboys offer a good matchup to opposing tight ends, but I'd much rather start Henry over Smith if given the choice.

Austin Hooper, Cleveland Browns (vs. ARI)

The Browns scored 42 points in their loss to the Los Angeles Chargers last week, but outside of a two-point conversion, Hooper wasn't targeted despite logging 52 snaps (72%) in Week 5. Over the past three weeks, Hooper has eight targets, three catches for 30 yards and a touchdown.

At this point, I'd actually prefer David Njoku over Hooper. That said, the Arizona Cardinals have allowed a league-low 4.04 fantasy points per game to the position this season.

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