As we are rolling along this offseason, we are laying the groundwork for early best ball drafts, new dynasty startups, and everything else under the fantasy sun as we gear up for the next NFL season. 

So far, we have carried a dynasty mindset, posting tiers for quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, tight ends, rookie rankings, and full-on player rankings with an eye on the future in the 2022 Fantasy Hub.

With the NFL Draft now over, we will see more and more emphasis placed on the 2022 season in a vacuum, with best ball season officially ramping up. Once the NFL schedule drops in a couple of weeks, there will be another push.

So far this week, we have done initial ranks for the quarterbacks, running backs, and wide receivers. You can also find full downloadable rankings for all formats here.

Since I already have some lengthy writeups for almost every player in those dynasty writeups, I will keep things tidier here. If you want more player expansion, check out those posts for the players you are looking for more context on. 

For some added context here, we are operating under a full-PPR lens, with added notes on receiving upside and downside for multiple backs to apply across the board no matter the format. With all of that out of the way let’s lay some groundwork for tight ends in 2022…

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2022 Fantasy Football Tight End Rankings

1Travis KelceKC
2Mark AndrewsBAL
3Darren WallerLV
4Kyle PittsATL
5George KittleSF
6Dalton SchultzDAL
7Dallas GoedertPHI
8T.J. HockensonDET
9Zach ErtzARI
10Cole KmetCHI
11Dawson KnoxBUF
12Albert OkwuegbunamDEN
13Noah FantSEA
14Tyler HigbeeLAR
15Pat FreiermuthPIT
16David NjokuCLE
17Irv Smith Jr.MIN
18Mike GesickiMIA
19Hunter HenryNE
20Evan EngramJAX
21Robert TonyanGB
22Gerald EverettLAC
23Austin HooperTEN
24Logan ThomasWAS
25Brevin JordanHOU
26Hayden HurstCIN
27Dan ArnoldJAX
28Jonnu SmithNE
29Cameron BrateTB
30C.J. UzomahNYJ
31Mo Alie-CoxIND
32Taysom HillNO
33O.J. HowardBUF
34Ricky Seals-JonesNYG
35Harrison BryantCLE

2022 Fantasy Football Tight Ends

1. Travis Kelce: Last year was the first time Kelce did not lead the position in points in six years. Although we did see more valleys from him in previous seasons, he was still the TE2 in points per game (16.4), expected points per game (15.7), and third in targets per game (8.4). Patrick Mahomes isn’t going anywhere while Kelce is still his foxhole target.

2. Mark Andrews: The first tight end other than Travis Kelce to lead the position in scoring since 2015. We finally got to see what Andrews could do with volume as he set career-highs playing 75% of the offensive snaps (10% higher than his previous high) while running 623 routes (273 more than his previous high). That helped Andrews post a gaudy 107-1,361-9 line on 153 targets. He is now the only tight end to score seven or more touchdowns in each of the past three seasons. 

3. Darren Waller: Took a step back through an injury-filled season. Waller ended 2021 with 55-665-2 on 93 targets, missing six full games. He caught just 59.1% of his targets after 73.8% and 76.9% the previous two seasons while his catchable target rate (67.8%) was 47th at his position after rates of 77.9% and 82.6% the prior two years. Found the end zone just twice after nine times the year before. Expecting rates to rebound and life should be better with Davante Adams on board. Was still targeted on 23.5% of his routes (fifth at tight end), averaged 8.5 targets per game (second), and was third in expected points per game (14.6) among his peers.

4. Kyle Pitts: First rookie tight end to reach 1,000 yards receiving since Mike Ditka in 1961. He lined up all over the field, playing 286 snaps in the slot, 248 snaps inline, and another 237 snaps out wide. Pitts was second among all tight ends in route participation rate (80.6%), ninth in targets per game (6.5), and second in intended air yards (1,204). Still carries quarterback and offensive concerns but will definitely score more than one touchdown in 2022.

5. George Kittle: Frustrating based on displayed capability and lack of consistent usage in his offense. That said, Kittle has still not finished lower than TE4 in points per game over the past four years. Expectation that Trey Lance starts adds another layer of variance while Kittle has missed multiple games in each of the past three seasons.  

6. Dalton Schultz: Last season’s TE3 overall and TE5 in points per game, catching 78-of-104 targets for 808 yards and eight touchdowns. Schultz ran hot since he averaged just 10.4 yards per catch while ranking ninth in expected points per game (10.9), but with Dallas losing Amari Cooper and Cedrick Wison while Michael Gallup recovers from a late-season ACL injury, Schultz is a top-two target in an offense we want attachment to.

7. Dallas Goedert: Ran a pass route on 79.7% of the Philadelphia dropbacks (a mark that would have been third over the full season) while commanding 24.5% of the Eagle targets in his full games played (which would have ranked second) after the trade of Zach Ertz. Showed big-play ability, posting a career-high 14.8 yards per reception and 10.9 yards per target. While rates were strong, he ran just 24.6 routes run and 6.2 targets per game over that span, which had him 16th in expected points per game (10.0). Spike-week upside, but QB and offensive limitations make him arbitrage George Kittle.

8. T.J. Hockenson: Receptions per game have now gone from 2.7 to 4.2 to 5.1 to open his career while his targets have climbed from 4.9 to 6.3 to 7.0 per game. Only question with Hockenson is does he really ever develop into a tide-turner at the position? 

9. Zach Ertz: In 11 games with the Cardinals, Ertz averaged 5.1 receptions for 52.2 yards per game with three scores. Seven of those games came without Hopkins, where Ertz averaged 9.0 targets per game while receiving a team-high 24.0% of the targets in those games.

10. Cole Kmet: While the overall production was not scintillating and he failed to score a touchdown, being so young and jumping to a full-time player should still be considered a positive for a tight end that was selected in the second round the year prior. Now, the ghost of Jimmy Graham (who matched Kmet with six end zone targets) will be gone and the Bears have a massive talent deficiency at wide receiver.

11. Dawson Knox: Fully utilized attachment to the Buffalo offense in Year 3, scoring 32.9% of his fantasy points from touchdowns alone, the highest touchdown dependency in the league. Including the postseason, Knox has now found the end zone at least once in 13 of his past 26 games played. While ranking 20th in targets per game (4.7), and 48th in target rate per route (14.0%) puts Knox in prime regression zone, he also still has that sweet attachment to the Buffalo offense and Josh Allen.

12. Albert Okwuegbunam: Was targeted on 23.5% of his routes run (fourth among tight ends), but he still was limited behind Noah Fant, playing just 47% of the snaps and running 170 pass routes. With Fant now moving on as part of the Russell Wilson trade, Okwuegbunam not only gets a massive quarterback upgrade, but a clear path to playing time.

13. Noah Fant: Averaged a career-high 4.3 receptions per game, but also had an early career-low depth of target of 6.4 yards, which played a role in dropping down to 9.9 yards per catch, which was also his lowest rate through three seasons. 12th at the position in targets per game (5.6) while ranking tied for 12th in expected points per game (9.7). A trade to Seattle keeps him potentially having an issue at the quarterback position and slowing down the breakout we are hunting for.

14. Tyler Higbee: Has not been able to recapture the ceiling he showcased to end the 2019 season, but he turned in a respectable TE13 scoring season per game in 2021 while ranking 11th in expected points per game. Closed the year with at least five receptions in the final four games and still attached to a top-rung passing offense.

15. Pat Freiermuth: Caught 60-of-79 targets for 497 yards and seven touchdowns as a rookie. With Eric Ebron out, Freiermuth averaged 4.1 receptions and 11.2 fantasy points per game, running a route on 67.6% of the team dropbacks and receiving 14.6% of the team targets. Still see him more touchdown-dependent than dynamic, but low-bar position makes those touchdowns carry a lot of weight. 

16. David Njoku: Still only turns 26 years old this July, coming off a career-high 13.2 yards per catch and 9.0 yards per target despite only playing 64% of the offensive snaps. He is getting a quarterback upgrade while the team has moved on from veteran Austin Hooper.

17. Irv Smith Jr.: Missed all of 2021 due to a meniscus injury. Still only 24 years old this season but enters the final year of his rookie contract with a lot to prove.

18. Mike Gesicki: Has been a top-12 scorer in each of the past three seasons overall while ranking as the TE16, TE9, and TE14 in points per game over that span, But has also left a lot of meat on the bone in his career while an influx of talent pushes him down the target ladder.

19. Hunter Henry: Dawson Knox-lite in his first season with the Patriots. Henry closed as the TE10 overall but relied on the strength of nine touchdowns to carry his water as he ranked 22nd in targets per game (4.4), 26th in receptions per game (2.9), and 18th in yardage per game (35.5).

20. Evan Engram: Coming off career-lows with 3.1 receptions and 27.2 yards per game with a career-low 8.9 yards per catch and 5.6 yards per target. New lifeline with Doug Pederson in Jacksonville, but still has to claw back to regain our trust as a TE1 or streamer we have faith in.

21. Robert Tonyan: We likely already have seen the best fantasy season of his career while also returning from an ACL injury last season, but 11 touchdown season in 2020 with attachment to Aaron Rodgers keeps the lights on. 

22. Gerald Everett: 48-478-4 line in the turtle-paced Seattle passing game. Moving to the Chargers, Everett lands in a spot with attachment to an elite quarterback and aggressive offense to allow us to keep chasing the rainbow.

23. Austin Hooper: Yards per reception have dropped from the previous season in each of the past two years while he averaged just 2.4 receptions per game in 2021. That was his lowest mark since his rookie season. Positive note is Tennessee tight ends combined to catch 82-of-104 targets for 677 yards and nine touchdowns in 2021. 

24. Logan Thomas: Has a TE1 season on his resume, but there is a lot of fragility here at age-31 coming off an ACL, MCL, and meniscus injury in December of last season. 

25. Brevin Jordan: Able to get on the field as the season progressed, catching three touchdowns over his final eight games played, but was still stifled by the Houston offense, turning in 8.9 yards per catch and 6.4 yards per target. 

26. Hayden Hurst: Former first-round pick has just one season with more than 30 receptions but survived the offseason as the top tight end attached one of the league’s best offenses. 

27. Dan Arnold: Everyone’s favorite dart throw tight end of the past two years is sitting with a career-high of 35 receptions in a season through six years in the league while the Jaguars have added a host of pass catching competition. 

28. Jonnu Smith: Smith ended up on the field for just 51% of the snaps despite missing just one game. He caught 28 passes for 294 yards and one score, posting a 39% success rate when targeted. Silver lining is that he was targeted on 27.2% of his routes.

29. Cameron Brate: Right now, is sitting as the TE1 on the Bucs while the team has started to insulate themselves as if Gronk may not return. A capable player near the end zone, but Brate is more Jack Doyle-ish between the 20s, averaging 10.6 yards per grab for his career, with fewer than 10.0 yards per catch in three of his past four seasons. 

30. C.J. Uzomah: 11th among all tight ends in route participation (73.1%) in 2021. He only managed to turn in three TE1 scoring weeks, but he also led all tight ends in scoring in two of those weeks. Jets’ tight ends combined for 50 catches for 534 yards and three touchdowns last season.

31. Mo Alie-Cox: Has averaged 13.4 yards per catch for his career while the team gave him an extension this offseason. But also has 70 catches through four years and the Colts have invested three draft picks into tight ends the past two years. 

32. Taysom Hill: Moving to tight end as a real and fantasy designation but can still be used as a runner near the goal line with an occasional gadget play to offer some wild card ability as a long-range grasp at usable best ball weeks.

33. O.J. Howard: 59 catches and four touchdowns over the past three seasons as he has been buried. Handcuff hopeful that is one play away from getting snaps in an elite offense. 

34. Ricky Seals-Jones: Feels like he is 35 years old, but still 27 and the starter for now with the Giants’ limited depth chart. 

35. Harrison Bryant: Should improve on 59% and 39% snap rates to start his career, but still needs doors opened to be a full-time player. 

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