Week 3 Fantasy TE Rankings: Must-starts, sleepers, potential busts at tight end

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  • Week 3 Fantasy TE Rankings: Must-starts, sleepers, potential busts at tight end

It happens every year at tight end — you draft a “name player,” and he starts slowly while other sleepers do better. By the time you figure out that you’ve drafted a bust, all the hot-starting sleepers have been picked up and you’ve taken subpar production from your TE spot for four or five weeks. We’re trying to get ahead of that curve with our Week 3 fantasy TE rankings. We’re not saying you should drop a big-name TE like Zach Ertz or Rob Gronkowski (well, maybe Gronk) in order to play Dalton Schultz or Drew Sample, but it’s not a bad idea to keep your options open and adding a backup from the waiver wire. 

We know there will be season-long surprises at this position, like Darren Waller last year, so looking at early-season trends and taking a shot on rising stars like T.J. Hockenson (@ Cardinals) and Mike Gesicki (@ Jaguars) over Ertz (vs. Bengals) or Evan Engram (vs. 49ers) shouldn’t be all that controversial. Obviously, Ertz and Engram are capable of big games at any time, but Hockenson and Gesicki are, too. The difference between them isn’t that great right now. Jonnu Smith (@ Vikings) has rocketed past all the above thanks to his athleticism and big-play ability, and a matchup against a Vikings team that was just torched for over 100 yards by the similarly athletic Mo Alie-Cox suggests another big game is in the offing. Likewise, Noah Fant (vs. Bucs) already established himself as an every-week play. 

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | D/ST | Kicker

Jordan Akins (@ Steelers) has also looked more involved early on, and the Steelers had trouble with Fant last week. He’s a sleeper with more upside than Austin Hooper (vs. Washington) or Gronk (@ Broncos), and the aforementioned Sample (vs. Eagles, who just allowed three TDs to Tyler Higbee) and Schultz (@ SEA) aren’t far behind. 

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

Injuries could shake up these rankings later in the week. We currently have George Kittle (knee) and Jack Doyle (ankle) included, but if they’re out, we know backups Jordan Reed and Alie-Cox can slide right in and get the job done. They represent two more sleepers who have as much upside as some of the “old guard.” 

We’re not saying you should do anything crazy like bench Mark Andrews (vs. Chiefs) because he’s coming off a one-catch game, but you should always be looking at all the stats (targets, specifically red-zone targets) and the matchups. Tight end is often a set-it-and-forget-it position, and while it’s nice to have one less start ’em, sit ’em decision, you might be better off if you give the position a little more thought.

Note: We’ll continue to update our tight end rankings to throughout the week, so check back for updates.

Week 3 Fantasy TE Rankings (Standard)

These rankings are for non-PPR leagues

Mark Andrews, BAL vs. KC
Travis Kelce, KC @ BAL
George Kittle, SF @ NYG
Jonnu Smith, TEN @ MIN
Tyler Higbee, LAR @ BUF
Noah Fant, DEN vs. TB
Hunter Henry, LAC vs. CAR
Darren Waller, LV @ NE
Jared Cook, NO vs. GB
T.J. Hockenson, DET @ ARZ
Mike Gesicki, MIA @ JAX
Hayden Hurst, ATL vs. CHI
Zach Ertz, PHI vs. CIN
Evan Engram, NYG vs. SF
Dallas Goedert, PHI vs. CIN
Eric Ebron, PIT vs. HOU
Jordan Akins, HOU @ PIT
Logan Thomas, WAS @ CLE
Drew Sample, CIN @ PHI
Dalton Schultz, DAL @ SEA
Austin Hooper, CLE vs. WAS
Chris Herndon, NYJ @ IND
O.J. Howard, TB @ DEN
Jack Doyle, IND vs. NYJ
Rob Gronkowski, TB @ DEN
Tyler Eifert, JAX vs. MIA
Jimmy Graham, CHI @ ATL
Taysom Hill, NO vs. GB
Ian Thomas, CAR @ LAC
Dan Arnold, ARI vs. DET
Irv Smith Jr., MIN vs. TEN
Greg Olsen, SEA vs. DAL
Kyle Rudolph, MIN vs. TEN
Dawson Knox, BUF vs. LAR

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