Daily Fantasy Football Tight End Primer: Week 9
The great thing about daily fantasy football is that so much changes every week, with matchups, salaries and projected ownership all varying -- sometimes significantly -- from main slate to main slate.
At numberFire, we have a plethora of tools to help you as you build your lineups, and something we've added this season is an in-depth look at the four core positions. In this piece, we'll break down the tight end slot on FanDuel's main slate.
Here we go.
Even though Travis Kelce ($6,700) is the top-projected tight end, per our models, Waller is my preferred pay this week. He offers a great combination of floor and ceiling and is in a smash spot at home versus the Detroit Lions while Kelce and (presumed starter) Matt Moore get a date with a tough Minnesota Vikings D.
This year's breakout star at the position, Waller has seen stellar usage. He has logged at least eight targets in four of his last five games. His 26% target share for the year is tied for first among all tight ends, and his 25% air yards share is tied for second, per AirYards.com. He leads the position in yards after the catch (258).
The Lions are surrendering the 10th-most FanDuel points per game to tight ends (10.6), and this game sports a 50.5-point total, with Oakland's 26.25-point implied total the second-highest mark of the slate.
Every box is checked here, and the lone blemish is ownership as he should be a popular play in one of the slate's most fantasy-friendly contests.
Hunter Henry, Chargers ($6,400)
Since making his return in Week 6, Henry owns a 21% target share and 21% air yards share. The target share ranks second on the Los Angeles Chargers in that time while the air yards share checks in third. After playing 66% of the snaps in Week 6, he's been in on 92% and 87% the last two weeks.
Fully healthy and playing well, Henry gets a home meeting with the Green Bay Packers. After a hot start to the campaign, Green Bay's defense has slowed, and for the season, they're giving up the sixth-most FanDuel points per game to tight ends (11.7).
Our models really like Henry this week, ranking him as the TE2, ahead of Waller, and projecting him for 10.6 FanDuel points.
Value Dart Throw
Noah Fant, Broncos ($4,600)
Tight end is laughably top-heavy on this main slate. We have just four players forecasted for more than 6.5 FanDuel points.
The TE5 is Fant.
We don't want to put too much stock into one game, especially when that game featured a quarterback who is no longer under center, but in the Denver Broncos' first contest sans Emmanuel Sanders, Fant paced the team with nine targets, good for a 28% share. While he caught only five for 28 yards, the volume is eye-catching, and it looks legit as he logged a season-high 82% snap rate. And all that came in a game in which Denver played with a lead for a lot of the afternoon.
At home against the Cleveland Browns and with Brandon Allen pulling the strings, Fant could put up a dud this week. But last week's volume is promising, and Fant is more than capable of hitting for a big play.
Zach Ertz, Eagles ($6,000)
Ertz is seemingly becoming less and less appealing by the week.
Dallas Goedert is eating into his role, and in Week 9, there's a shot DeSean Jackson returns, potentially shrinking Ertz's piece of the pie a little more. Oh, and the Philadelphia Eagles are facing the Chicago Bears, one of the NFL's premier defenses.
All of that should keep people away from Ertz this week, and it could be the perfect time to use him in GPPs.
While Goedert's role is definitely on the rise, Ertz is still seeing good volume. Over the past three weeks -- so since Goedert's usage increased -- Ertz has averaged 6.0 targets per game, compared to 5.7 for Goedert. Ertz is seeing the downfield targets, though, with a 29% air yards share in that span, compared to a 12% clip for Goedert.
And as good as the Chicago D is, they're beatable with tight ends as they're giving up the 12th-most FanDuel points per game to the position (10.3).
Ertz is an elite talent at the position, and even though Goedert is coming on, we need to have our antennas up whenever there's a chance to get Ertz at what should be fairly low ownership. We have Ertz projected for 9.6 FanDuel points, which slots him as our TE4.