The AEE Fantasy Start/Sit List Week One- TE edition
Football is back, baby!
The excitement for the regular season is brimming among fantasy football owners. We are finally approaching real, actual, legitimate football games. As we enter the regular season, let’s take a look at the best starts and sits heading into Week 1 of the NFL regular season.
Start of the Week: Eric Ebron @ Los Angeles Chargers
Ebron’s value has taken a significant hit since the sudden and shocking retirement of Andrew Luck. However, I think Ebron is still a red zone monster, capable of pulling in a couple of touchdowns on any given week. The Chargers will be without star safety Derwin James, which could open up the middle of the field. I really like Ebron as a top ten tight end this week.
Start – Jared Cook vs Houston Texans: Jared Cook has been one of my favorite tight ends to draft, as he’s often gone after guys like Hunter Henry and OJ Howard. I think Cook has a chance to compete with Kelce, Ertz, and Kittle to break into the top 3 in TE scoring in fantasy football. That starts with a home matchup against a Houston Texans team that will likely be more focused on MT and Alvin Kamara.
Start – Vance McDonald @ New England Patriots: I’m not big on Ben Roethlisberger when it comes to road games, but I’m willing to take a shot on Vance McDonald. Ben tends to target his tight ends more when he’s in trouble, and though the Patriots do not have a highly rated pass rush, I think the Steelers could find themselves struggling. This means Ben will be more likely to lean on Vance.
Start – TJ Hockenson vs Arizona Cardinals: In the history of the NFL, there is only 1 rookie tight end that’s surpassed 1000 yards; Mike Ditka in 1961. For TJ Hockenson to even attempt to break history, he will need a good showing against a weak Cardinals defense. I think Hock will show out in his first NFL game, as I could see him breaking one free while the defense focuses on Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay.
Start – OJ Howard vs San Francisco 49ers: I’m skeptical of OJ Howard’s perceived value, but I do recognize his talent when he’s on the field. The 49ers defense is average, and it’s all systems go for the Tampa Bay offense in a home opener. I’m enthusiastically putting Howard in my lineup.
Start – Austin Hooper @ Minnesota Vikings: The Vikings defense will look to rebound this year, so I like Austin Hooper as a low-end TE1 in PPR leagues specifically. I think he could see a lot of outlet passes from Matty Ice as he looks to avoid Minnesota’s pass rush. I expect Xavier Rhodes to matchup with Julio Jones, meaning Hooper could see more looks than usual.
Sit of the Week: Evan Engram
The Cowboys have arguably the best defense they’ve had in over a decade. There are no real alternatives in the passing game, it’s going to be Saquon and Evan Engram. The fact that the Giants are committed to rolling Eli Manning out onto the turf has me fading Engram for the first week of the season, as I think he’s going to receive a lot of attention in this game.
Sit – Hunter Henry vs Indianapolis Colts: I’m officially in the “I’ll believe it when I see it” camp when it comes to Hunter Henry. Henry has already suffered two season ending injuries in his career, most recently a torn ACL that effectively ended his 2018 season. Though he did return later in the year, I wonder how he’ll fair in actual NFL games.
Sit – Greg Olsen vs Los Angeles Rams: Father time has officially caught up to the Carolina Panthers star tight end. Olsen has been a model of consistency for the Panthers, but the last two years has sat out extensive time with injuries. Coming back to face the Rams defense in a road game does not have me enthused about his potential week 1 outcome.
Sit – Kyle Rudolph vs Atlanta Falcons: Rudolph is the human embodiment of fool’s gold when it comes to fantasy football. If you put him in, you’re praying for a touchdown. I think the Vikings will look to play inside out against this Falcons defense, and so I’m fading Rudolph this week, as there are many better options out there.
Sit – Mark Andrews @ Miami Dolphins: Mark Andrews has become one of fantasy football owner’s favorite sleepers. However, he’s currently not listed on the depth chart as the starter, Nick Boyle is. Furthermore, he’s still going to have to compete with Hayden Hurst for continuous targets. Until their roles shake out and become clear, I’m not starting a Ravens tight end.
Sit – David Njoku vs Tennessee Titans: I really like David Njoku as a tight end this year, but he’s been drafted so late that most people have a second option. If I can help it, I’d avoid this underrated Titans defense, as the team’s linebackers and safeties are above average and can cover tight ends well.