Fantasy Football Tight End Streaming: Week 8 Edition
In what was a relatively low scoring week for tight ends, there were a lot of surprising names among the scoring leaders at the position. That starts at the top with Gavin Escobar, who caught three passes for 65 yards and a pair of touchdowns against the Giants, finishing as the number-one overall player at the position.
The Cowboys' tight end wasn't the only surprise among the highest scorers of the week. Several players with ownership under five percent, such as Cooper Helfet, Jeff Cumberland and Jermaine Gresham, all had huge games in Week 7.
The good news is that this proves that there's value to be had on the waiver wire at tight end. The bad news is that the players we recommended last week were not on that list. Unfortunately, when you dive head first into the deep end that is the waiver wire on a weekly basis, you are bound to miss from time to time. It's just the nature of the beast.
Week 8’s tight end streaming options feature some a few guys who got off to slow starts this season but seem to be picking it up as of late. All three players come into this week hot and find themselves in top-10 matchups. Let's get at it.
Owen Daniels, Baltimore Ravens
Owned - ESPN: 22.1%, Yahoo: 49% Week 8 numberFire Rank: 12th
Since assuming the starting tight end role in Baltimore after Dennis Pitta went down with a hip injury, Owen Daniels has been very much on the fantasy radar. In four starts this season, Daniels has been targeted 25 times - more than 6 per game. That volume is definitely appealing but, more importantly, the Ravens' tight end has cashed in on his opportunity. Daniels has converted 17 of his 25 targets for 205 yards and a touchdown.
He now finds himself ranked ninth in Reception Net Expected Points (NEP) at 30.24 despite not starting the first three games of the season. Pretty impressive.
This week, Daniels draws a matchup with a Bengals defense which has been struggling of late. Cincinnati has given up at least 27 points in each of the past three games. In those three games, they have allowed opposing quarterbacks to throw six touchdown passes. Of those six, four of them were to a tight end. In fact, the Bengals have allowed the most fantasy points to opposing tight ends on the season, giving up nearly two fantasy points per game more than anyone else in the league to the tight end position.
Daniels is coming off of an impressive 6-catch, 58-yard, 1-touchdown performance against the Falcons and gets a dream matchup with the Bengals. He's the number-one streaming option on the board, quite easily.
Scott Chandler, Buffalo Bills
Owned - ESPN: 0.9%, Yahoo: 5% Week 8 numberFire Rank: 13th
After a slow start to the season, Scott Chandler has really started to come on strong in recent weeks. Chandler, who was targeted just a combined three times in the Bills' first two games, has now seen 31 targets over his last five games. Over that span, he's seen at least five targets in each game and has converted those targets into 21 catches.
The biggest reason why Chandler hasn't had significant fantasy value so far this season is his lack of touchdowns - he's caught 14 touchdowns over the past three seasons, but has yet to catch a touchdown pass this season. Fortunately for Chandler, a matchup with the Jets' this week might just be the perfect remedy for this problem.
The Jets have struggled against the pass all season long. New York ranks 20th against the pass according to our metrics, have given up the 21st-most passing yards in the NFL and, most importantly, have allowed a league leading 18 touchdown passes this season. Of those 18 touchdowns, 7 have been to the tight end. In fact, the Jets have allowed opposing tight ends to catch a touchdown in four of their past five games, including three multi-touchdown games.
By starting Chandler, you get the high floor of a guy averaging more than six targets a game plus the upside of a spectacular matchup. The Jets have allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season, and that is after allowing just 7 catches for 65 yards and zero touchdowns to the tight end position through the first two weeks of the season.
Charles Clay, Miami Dolphins
Owned - ESPN: 12.5%, Yahoo: 40% Week 8 numberFire Rank: 14th
Charles Clay came into this season with a decent amount of hype surrounding him. Clay was coming off of a breakout campaign where he caught 69 balls for 759 yards and 6 touchdowns, and looked like a weekly matchup nightmare for opposing defenses. That said, the Dolphins' tight end has not even come close to living up to that hype so far this season.
Until last week, Clay had yet to eclipse 35 receiving yards on the season and had yet to catch a touchdown. He was averaging just 3.5 catches per game, 34 yards per game and fewer than 10 yards per catch. That is just not very good.
As I just alluded to, last week was a breakout performance for the Dolphins' tight end. Clay caught four of his five targets for 58 yards and a touchdown last week, showing glimpses of the mismatch many people thought he might become. Much of the reason for Clay's improved numbers can be attributed to the strong play of Ryan Tannehill. Tannehill - who also got off to a slow start this season - has really come on as of late. The Dolphins' quarterback has thrown for at least 240 yards and 2 touchdowns in each of the past three games and is really starting to look comfortable in that Bill Lazor offense.
This week, Clay will look to stay hot against a Jaguars' defense who has not been able to slow down tight ends all season long, allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends on the season. Clay is coming off of his best game of the season, has a hot quarterback throwing him the ball and draws an excellent matchup this week. Don't hesitate to pencil him into your lineups.