Welcome to Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em Tight Ends edition for Week 11 of the NFL season. This edition features the potential return of a once surefire must-start. Plus, a top-10 scorer at the position could pose some concern for owners this week.
* Reminder: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em is intended to present you with the non-obvious choices for your fantasy lineup. We dig deep into player matchups, scoring trends, and other factors to best help you with your fantasy decisions. Superstars such as Travis Kelce will not be found in this column. If you’re looking for players of such caliber check out our weekly fantasy football tight end rankings.
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TE: Start ‘Em
Start of the Week: T.J. Hockenson at CAR
Having been the epitome of consistency for much of the season, Hockenson laid a dud in Week 10, racking up just 3.30 points. Still, he averaged 15.1 ppg over his three previous contests. Over the last four weeks, the Panthers have allowed a league-high 18.68 ppg to opposing TEs. Since Week 4, six TEs have either hauled in a receiving TD or eclipsed 100 yards against Carolina.
Jared Cook vs. ATL
No Drew Brees certainly gives the selection reason to pause. However, the mouth-watering matchup should shed much doubt. No defense allows more points to TEs this season than the Falcons. They’ve also allowed 11 red zone touches to the position, third-most in NFL.
Logan Thomas at CIN
At a position desperate for stability, the former college QB has now scored 10.6-plus points in three of his last four games. Washingon has begun to air the football out with Alex Smith at QB, as the team is fresh off a game where they threw the ball 55 times for 390 yards. The Bengals allow the second-most points and third-most receiving yards to TEs this year. Since Week 5, they’ve allowed six receiving TDs to the position. Thomas has found the endzone in half of his last four games.
Eagles TEs at CLE
Who you plug into your lineup here is based on Zach Ertz’s health. If he’s made available this week, you ride with the Pro Bowler. If not, Dallas Goedert and even Richard Rodgers become intriguing plays. This decision has more to do with the recent trend of Philly’s aerial attack than it does the matchup, although the Browns have surrendered the sixth-most points to the position over the last four weeks. Goedert and Rodgers combined for 11 targets a week ago. The addition of speedster Jalen Reagor has opened up the intermediate passing game, as well as the seams for the TEs to go to work.
Sleeper: Chris Herndon at LAC
Herndon has been a non-factor all season. In fact, you’d have been better off leaving your TE slot empty rather than playing him over the last two weeks as he totaled -0.7 points over that span. With that said, the Chargers have allowed a TD to an opposing TE in back-to-back games and seven TDs over their nine games this year.
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TE: Sit ‘Em
Sit of the Week: Trey Burton vs. GB
Burton’s reign as a viable, high-volume play at the position appears to be fading. Since the team’s Week 7 bye, Burton has failed to eclipse three receptions, nor find the endzone in any game. He’s also averaged just 13 receiving yards over that span. The Packers are tied with the Steelers in allowing the fewest ppg to the position this season, as they’ve surrendered just one TD to a TE all year long.
Robert Tonyan at IND
Sticking with the same matchup, Tonyan has come back down to reality of late. After hauling in five TDs from Week 2 through Week 4, Tonyan has scored zero TDs over his last five games, averaging just 6.3 ppg and topping 33 receiving yards just once over that span. The Colts have allowed just two opposing TEs to surpass 46 receiving yards against them this season, and they are the only team who has yet to allow a TD to the position.
Buyers Beware: Hayden Hurst at NO
Hurst is the seventh-highest scoring player at his position this season, a position that as we noted multiple times, lacks consistency. For this reason, you’ll likely ride with Hurst in Week 11. However, keep in mind that since New Orleans’ Week 6 bye, they’ve allowed just 5.55 ppg to the position group (4th-fewest in NFL).