Here it is the most frustrating rankings I do each and every year. There is a major gap in talent, lots-of-injuries, age issues, and TE`s seem to change teams like young kids change who they are dating. I will do the top-25 TE`s. Most leagues will see anywhere between 20-40 TE rostered at any given time, but only about 25 will have true relevance.
1. Travis Kelce, Chiefs- Last season 83 rec, 1038 yards, and 8 TDs. Once again another great season from the elite TE. This year he will have a new QB for the first time in a long while. Mahomes as a massive arm and the Watkins-Hill duo should open up the middle for days.
2. Zach Ertz, Eagles- Last season 74 rec, 824 yards and 8 TDs. Ertz did most of that with a back up QB. One of the main reasons he is now second in my rankings is this simple fact. Since 2015 he has played only 14/15 games yet still caught 74+ passes, 800+ yards and has gone up from 2,4, to 8 TDs a season. With out ever playing a full 16, and you could say 3 QBs if you count Rookie as a different QB, he is still as consistent as it gets.
3. Jimmy Graham, Packers- Last season 57 rec, 520 yards and 10 TDs. While the drop off in stats is obvious between the first three, Graham just got the maybe best QB in the league. Graham has talent we have all seen it, but it was in some cases wasted in Seattle as he was under utilized. That should change, and he should be a force with Rodgers at the helm.
4. Evan Engram, Giants- Last season 64 rec, 722 yards and 6 TDs. There is a ton to like here with Engram. His size and ability make him the next Kelce or Gronk. He can make plays everywhere and is a match up nightmare. Even with all the other weapons around him, I expect him to improve on what he did last year.
5. Gronk, Patriots- Last season 69 rec, 1084 yards and 8TD. I just cant put Gronk higher. He has played 15, 8 and 14 games over the last three seasons. They now have a rushing attack, and his retirement thoughts I think will still weigh on him. They also have a full stable of healthy WR. I think this is where we start to see the fall off, and if history shows true he could see less games than any other Top-10 TE.
6. Greg Olsen, Panthers- Last season (In 7 games) 17 rec, 191 yards and 1 TD. His stats look worse than they were, he was in 7 games, but really only played in 3. He led the team in targets the previous seasons, and they didnt bolster the WR corp enough for that to change. Olsen will go back to being Olsen.
7. Delanie Walker, Titans- Last season 74 rec, 807 yards and 3 TD. It was Walkers lowest TD total in the last three years. He saw more rec and yards this year than the previous. Mariota was also coming back from injury. Walker is still one of the best around, and TE7 is a good value for a guy set to get you double-digit points almost every week.
8. Trey Burton, Bears- Last season 23 rec, 248 yards and 5 TD. Yes, there is a bit of a hype train that follows Burton. But, its not without warrant. He had a great yards-per-target avg at 12th overall with TE who caught more than 20 passes. Burton is also now in an offense where he is not the 2nd string TE. Hes the 2nd best pass catching option on the roster. Burton could be a massive break out candidate.
9. Jordan Reed, Redskins- Last season 27 rec, 211 yards and 2 TD. Reed is going the way of Gronk right now playing in 14 games in 2015, then only 12 in 2016 and last season just 6. He is a walking injury report. There is a plus side, when hes healthy he is one of the most athletic TE in the league and he just got a QB who loves TE in Alex Smith.
10. Kyle Rudolph, Vikings- Last season 57 rec, 532 yards and 8 TDs. I have never been a huge fan of Rudolph. He had that outlier season in 2016, but 2015 and 2017 were almost identical. As a TE10 there is some potential and good value. Its a totally new offense, if they can get Rudolph featured more his 2016 season could be repeated. His talent is there, but using his stats over the last three years to project this year is no easy task. As the new QB, RB, and OC may all have a say.
11. Jack Doyle, Colts- Last Season 80 rec, 690 yards and 4 TD. Even with the Ebron signing Doyle still stands at 6`6. Hes a big redzone threat and last year was among the most targeted pass catchers.
12. OJ Howard, Buccaneers- Last season 26 rec, 432 yards and 6 TDs. I am calling the Bucs bluff here. I wont put Brate above him, OJ is better at pretty much everything. They gave Brate a good size contract, but I think it had more to do with the idea of consistency in the offense. OJ should take the TE1 slot, even if the use dual-TE sets OJ would still be the 2nd or 3rd best pass catcher on the field.
13. Tyler Eifert, Bengals- Last season 4 rec, 46 yards and 0 TD. Another one of the oft-injured TE`s with talent. In the last 3 seasons he has played 23 games out of a possible 48. If we can ever see Eifert get back to his 2015 form, he could be a massive steal as he had double-digit TDs.
14. Benjamin Watson, Saints- Last season 61 rec, 522 yards and 4 TD. Ben Watson seems to be the ageless wonder. Back with the Saints he should be a bit better than last year.
15. David Njoku, Browns- Last season 32 rec, 386 yards and 4 TD. Last year was the rookie year for maybe the most athletic TE we have ever seen. Browns had questions literally everywhere. This year they are more stable and he should improve drastically.
16. George Kittle, 49ers- Last season 43 rec, 515 yards and 2 TD. First off let me remind you that Jimmy G was only the QB the last couple games. The offense still has some questions, and Kittle was a surprise rookie. So we will just have to wait and see, but his talent slates him as an easy third offensive option.
17. Austin Hooper, Falcons- Last season 49 rec, 526 yards and 3 TD. Hooper is sitting on maybe the most crowded offense in the NFL. But, there is a positive as he was top-10 in RZ targets for TE last year and this will be his 3rd NFL Season.
18. Charles Clay, Bills- Last season 49 rec, 558 and 2 TD. Clay and Hooper had similar numbers last year. Clay is a talented player, but his career has always been marred by QB questions. That wont stop this season, but he is also the only reliable pass catcher on the roster for the most part.
19. Ed Dickson, Seahawks- Last season 30 rec, 437 yards and 1 TD. Ed has not been a true TE1 in years, due to other TE always being on the roster. He will finally get to show what he can do now. Jimmy Graham had some success with Wilson, lets see if Ed can do the same.
20. Jared Cook, Raiders- Last season 54 rec, 688 yards and 2 TD. Cook has been on 3 teams in 3 years. This would now be his second year with Oakland. There is a new HC in town and he likes to throw the ball. This could aid in Cook getting a numbers bump.
21. Gerald Everett, Rams- Last season 16 rec, 244 yards and 2 TD. Everett is an athletic TE who can play the slot. The Rams offense, is trying to re-create “The Greatest Show on Turf.” Everett will be a part of that, though this year may not be his year.
22. Ricky Seals-Jones, Cardinals- Last season 12 rec, 201 yards and 3 TD. Plain and simple, David Johnson is their offense. Beyond that its anyone’s game and Seals-Jones can be used multiple ways. Look for him to see a large amount of snaps this year.
23. Hayden Hurst, Ravens- Hurst is a rookie, and he has a large upside. While his role is currently unkown, the offense is looking for any edge it can get. Baltimore has struggled with WR for several years, if Hurst can bring that first-round caliber talent to the offense, then he is a steal at TE23.
24. Rico Gathers, Cowboys- He did not play last year due to a head injury, but he is a massive player 6`6 and 285. Someone is going to have to fill Wittens role over the middle. He flashed some talent in the pre-season before his injury.
25. Virgil Green, Chargers- 14 rec, 191 yards and 1 TD. Green finds him self in a strange situation. Gates tenure ended. Then Henry got hurt. Green is now the TE1 on a team ready to make a playoff push. The offense loves TE`s and he has some ability, he could set career numbers across the board quite easily.