Tight End Streaming: Week 5 Edition
"They are who we thought they were!" -Dennis Green, former head coach, Arizona Cardinals, possibly drunk at the time
For the first time this season, the big boys took the top-four spots in weekly tight end fantasy scoring. Tony Gonzalez and Jimmy Graham were numbers one and two respectively and something old (Antonio Gates) and something new (Jordan Cameron) filled out the three and four spots. Does this signal the end of tight end streaming as we know it? Not a chance; the stream was as deep as ever in Week 4.
Coby Fleener, Garrett Graham, Sean McGrath (who is somehow not the lead singer of Sugar Ray), Charles Clay, Mychal (because "Michael" does not suffice) Rivera, Jeff Cumberland, and Kellen Winslow Jr. all were top-12 tight ends last week. Seven of the top-12 and 15 of the top-24 tight ends were practically streamerific (yes, I'm allowed to make up words). In addition, two of my three Week 4 streamer recommendations wound up in the top 13 (Clay and Heath Miller). So what have we learned? Big dogs have big days, but the stream keeps on flowing.
Week 5 StreamersKellen Winslow Jr., New York Rexes (owned in 5.3% of ESPN Leagues)
Former NFL star Kellen Winslow Jr. currently sells insurance in Akron, Ohio.
Although untrue, that statement sounds far more realistic than the truth. Winslow is actually a current contributing member of the Jets offense, and, even though he is 378 years old, has already had two games this season with more than 70 yards receiving. Winslow's receiving net expected points per target, a statistic that measures how many real points a player adds to their offense's output on a per target basis, is a solid .58, which compares favorably with Owen Daniels' .57 NEP per target. Winslow becomes even more valuable to the Jets offense in Week 5, as Santonio Holmes and Stephen Hill are out with injuries.
Talking about injuries, the Jets get the Falcons on Monday night, and the Falcons' defense is decimated by injuries. Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon is out, defensive end Kroy Biermann is done for the season, and corner Asante Samuel may not be active as well. In addition, Atlanta hasn't been able to put pressure on the quarterback this season. All of this leads to a favorable situation for Winslow. Look for him to pull top-12 numbers in Week 5.Charles Clay, Miami Water Mammals (owned in 20.0% of ESPN Leagues)
Someone must be listening to me, because Clay's ownership in ESPN leagues has gone up more than 8% since I listed him as a streamer last week. Week 4 Clay owners were rewarded with a 42-yard, one-touchdown performance. Clay's NEP per target remained favorable at .66, and he's hauled in between four and six passes in each of his games. We project Clay to have just about the same chance to score a touchdown this week as Jason Witten and Greg Olsen. I know you might be looking for a rock of a tight end, but this week, a top producer will be made of Clay.Garrett Graham, Houston We Have a Problems (owned in 2.7% of ESPN Leagues)
Garrett Graham, the Touchdown Man! Yes, I just gave a nickname to Houston's backup tight end. But boy is he deserving. Graham has a touchdown in three of four games this year. With an impressive .85 receiving NEP per target, Graham had the best game of his season on Sunday against the stingy Seahawks defense, racking up 69 yards on five catches and (of course) scoring a touchdown. We give him a slightly better chance to pick up a touchdown this week than Jared Cook. Look for Matt Schaub to make use of his tight ends against the physical 49ers, and don't be surprised to see the Touchdown Man go for six yet again.
Sean McGrath, Kansas City AndyReids