2023 Fantasy Football Rankings: Tight Ends
Fantasy Football draft season is quickly approaching with NFL squads reporting for training camps. If you’re like me, you’re already deep into mock drafts and scouring the latest from the online fantasy cognoscenti for any inside scoops on value players and league-winning strategies.
While I’m not officially a part of that elite club of fantasy “experts”, I am a veteran player with 15 years of experience in basically every available format. As a participant in 4 dynasty leagues and 9 redraft leagues this year, my focus and commitment will be tested, but I feel good about my Big Board and my draft strategy. It’s going to be fun!
These rankings are based on the order I would draft each player in their position group, not necessarily where I believe they’ll finish up at season’s end. All rankings are based on a 12-team, full PPR format. Without further ado, here are my Top 20 Fantasy TEs of 2023.
TOP 20 FANTASY TES OF 2023
1. Travis Kelce, KC
Travis Kelce is in a class of his own at the TE position for Fantasy purposes. Also, he doesn’t miss games. It’s not a stretch to say that Kelce might be the biggest lock for weekly and yearly production in all of Fantasy Football. Only 4 WRs and 3 RBs finished with more than Kelce’s 316 PPR points in 2022.
2. T.J. Hockenson, MIN
3. Mark Andrews, BAL
Hockenson is the number 2 target for a Vikings offense that put up the 4th most passing attempts in 2022. With Dalvin Cook currently floating in the free agency ether and the Skol defense looking potentially quite porous, Kirk Cousins and co. should easily match those numbers in 2023. Mark Andrews is one of the best YAC producers at TE in the game. If he’s fully healthy, he should feast as Lamar Jackson’s top target in the Ravens’ new Todd Monken-led offense.
4. George Kittle, SF
5. Darren Waller, NYG
6. Dallas Goedert, PHI
7. Pat Freiermuth, PIT
8. Evan Engram, JAX
9. Kyle Pitts, ATL
George Kittle had a resurgent and relatively healthy season in 2022 despite the plethora of QBs tossing him the rock over the course of the year. If he stays on the field, he’s one of the positions top Fantasy assets. WIth the potential to be far and away the top target for Giants QB Daniel Jones, Waller could finish as high as the TE2 overall. There’s a lot of mouths to feed in Philly, but Goedert is Jalen Hurts favorite target over the middle of the field and in the Red Zone. He just needs to stay healthy. Pat Freiermuth continues to climb the TE pantheon as a major player in what should be a much improved passing offense in 2023. Despite the offense’s struggles last year, ‘Muth still earned the 5th most targets and 6th most catches and yards at the position. Turns out, all Evan Engram needed to become a trustworthy fantasy asset is a QB who could actually feed him catchable footballs with regularity. He’s a solid mid-tier TE1. Kyle Pitts, like Darren Waller, has a chance to be his team’s number 1 receiver, and thus has a very high ceiling. His floor, however, is lower than the other players in this tier. The ultimate boom or bust candidate at TE in 2023.
10. Tyler Higbee, LAR
11. David Njoku, CLE
12. Cole Kmet, CHI
13. Dalton Schultz, HOU
14. Gerald Everett, LAC
For Higbee, Njoku, Kmet, and Schultz, QB play will be vital to their success as Fantasy assets in 2023. A healthy Matt Stafford likely returns Higbee to weekly starter status, while Njoku and Kmet owners hope that their respective ultra-talented QBs will actually start playing as such this season, and Schultz has to deal with a Rookie passer in Texans QB C.J. Stroud. The final player in this tier has a different problem. His QB (Justin Herbert) is one of the league’s best passers, but Everett is at most the 4th option in the passing game behind RB Austin Ekeler and WRs Keenan Allen and Mike Williams. Still, he garnered 87 targets in 16 games in 2022. He’s a high-end TE2
15. Greg Dulcich, DEN
16. Juwan Johnson, NO
17. Irv Smith, Jr., CIN
18. Dalton Kincaid, BUF
19. Sam LaPorta, DET
20. Mike Gesicki, NE
The Broncos can’t be that bad on offense again in 2023, right? With the entire offense a candidate for positive regression this season under new head coach Sean Payton, the talented but under-utilized Dulcich could really break out. Juwan Johnson has a new and improved QB in Derek Carr, and the former Raider could utilize Johnson as a poor man’s Darren Waller. It doesn’t get better than Joe Burrow throwing you passes if you’re Irv Smith, Jr., but whether the talented but underwhelming TE can hit his stride or not in Cincy is a tricky question. I love the hype for Dalton Kincaid in this Bills offense with Josh Allen under center. He was their target all along this offseason, with the team likely looking for their own Travis Kelce-like player in the arms race with Kansas City in the AFC. LaPorta is the talk of Mo-Town and could earn a TJ Hockenson-sized role in the offense in short order. QB Mac Jones has to throw the ball to somebody in New England, and Gesicki has high-end receiving skills from the TE position. He’s at worst the Pat’s 2nd option in the passing game behind WR JuJu Smith-Schuster.
“Dark Horse” Top 10 Candidates: Dalton Schultz, Greg Dulcich
Bold Prediction: 3 rookie TE’s will finish as Top 20 players in 2023: Kincaid, LaPorta, and Luke Musgrave (GB)
Don’t forget to check out The Steelers Fix Podcast with myself and Andrew Wilbar below, where we Draft our top 10 fantasy TEs for 2023 and talk whether Pat Freiermuth will get lost in the shuffle on offense, or if he poised for a huge Fantasy year.
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