12 team draft predictions
1 Jimmy Graham Rd 2 pick 9
2 Antonio Gates Rd 5 pick 6
3. Rob Gronkowski Rd 2 pick 6
4. Jermichael Finley Rd 6 pick 7
5. Aaron Hernandez Rd 6 pick 6
6. Jason Witten Rd 6 pick `12
7 Vernon Davis Rd 6 pick 4
8. Brandon Pettigrew Rd 9 pick 2
9 Fred Davis; Rd 7 pick 12
10. Tony Gonz; Rd 10 pick 4
11. Owen Daniels Rd 12 pick 12
12. Jared Cook Rd 13 pick 3
13 Jermaine Gresham Rd 12 pick 1
14 Jacob Tamme Rd 8 pick 1
15. Brent Celek Rd 13 pick 9
16. Kyle Rudolph
17. Coby Fleener Rd 11 pick 5
18 Dustin Keller
19 Dallas Clark
21. Greg Olsen Rd 13 pick 11
22. Kellen winslow
23. Ed Dickson
24. Who cares
Breakdown: If you notice after gronk and graham there is a significant dropoff. The next tight end taken after graham or gronk is usually Antonio Gates in round 5 then Vernon Davis in round 6. There is usually a tight end run in round 6 with Hernandez, Finley,Witten and Davis coming off the board.
1 Jimmy Graham: Saints – Given his inexperience, you could make a strong argument that he has more upside than any tight end in the league. Sky is the limit for Jimmy Graham.
I like Jimmy over Gronk at the 1 spot and is the only tight end i would consider taking early in round 2
2 Rob Gronkowki : He’s a beast but is he a beast that can stay healthy? I say he will, but defenses will focus more on Gronk this season and with the new additions at wr for the Patriots, I say his td will drop along with his reception total. I would stay away from Gronk and let someone else take him .
3. Antonio Gates: he's finally healthy and considering he is going in round 5 its the perfect time to get Gates. The bad news is that he has missed nine games in the last two years. The good news is that he averaged 13.8 points per game in 2010 when Vincent Jackson missed most of the season and Jackson has left for Tampa Bay. If he gets hurt, its not like your lost your 1st or 2nd round pick. You can always draft a tight end later in the draft.
4. J Finley: GB, Solid TE that deserves to get more targets and may with all the wr weaponson the Packers. Rd 6 pick 7 average. He will have games where he doesn't do well. He will lead you to victory a few weeks and never draft a tight end to be your main weapon in fantasy. I say he has a better season that last year.
5. Aaron Hernandez:Rd 6 pick 6. I'll take him there all day. Hernandez finished as top 5 tight
end in 2011 . He will even get you some rushing yards. Doesn’t have the upside of the players ahead of him but managed 910 yards and 7 touchdowns in just fourteen games last season.
6. Jason Witten: With Laurent Robinson having a solid season as the team’s third wide receiver, Witten had just 117 targets, his lowest total since the 2006 season. It is nice that Robinson isn’t in Dallas anymore. Not so nice is Witten’s production over the Cowboys final six games (272 receiving yards and no touchdowns). Witten's numbers will go up in 2012
7 Vernon Davis; he could very well end up as the 3rd best tight end. Celek re-emerged as a weapon for the Eagles over the final 10 games, catching 53 passes for 738 yards and five touchdowns.
8. Brandon Pettigrew: Lions – Pettigrew had the 2nd most targets amongst tight ends last season with 126 but was the 11th ranked fantasy player at his position so you could make the argument that he has a lot of upside but you would be wrong. He catches a lot of passes (83 last year) but not for a lot of yards (10.0 career yards per reception). In Detroit’s offense, he gets few looks down the field and is mostly a check down option in the passing game.
9. Fred Davis: Redskins – If you watched any Redskins games last year, it was readily apparent that Davis has major upside. Look no further than his 8.1 points per game last season, 5th best amongst tight ends. With better wide receivers in Washington this season, a rookie quarterback and his 2011 suspension, Davis carries some risk and that is why he isn’t higher on the list. However, it won’t be a surprise if he is in the top five by season’s end.
I love Fred Davis in rd 7 this year. If i don't get graham, I will be gunning to draft Pettigrew or Davis.
10. Tony G: Falcons – The Falcons figure to have a solid offense once again in 2012 but I am not sold that the 36-year-old Gonzalez can repeat his 875-yard, seven-touchdown performance from a year ago. Gonzo is going to need to increase his touchdown count to repeat as a top 5 tight end. He will have a good year and considering he is going in round 9 or 10. He is a solid pick
11. Owen Daniels: His backup is now in denver. He is healthy and on a good team playing against some bad defenses in 2012. He might have some games where he only gets 1 or 2 catches, but he will have more good games then bad this season.
12. Jared cook; He finally started living up to his potential at the end of 2011 and maybe the 2nd best receiver on tennessee.
13 J Gresham : Bengals – The 2010 1st round pick might be ready to bust out in 2012 provided he improves his route running. The talent is there, the light needs to come on.
14. Jacob Tamme: being drafted too early. I pass. Could be a key weapon when needed but manning will air it out to his wr's over Tamme
15. Brent Celek : Rd 13 pick 9. i'll take that all day with Celek.
Who is this years jimmy graham or Gronk?
The answer is noone. There will be none. If you want a graham or gronk you'll have to get them in rd 2. Id personally go for another tight end unless they slip to late 2 or early 3.
If i had to take a stab at it, i would say Fred Davis will be that guy. He didn't play the last 4 games last season and that shows in his average draft position. RG3 will throw alot of short and safe passes down the middle to Davis. Davis averaged nearly 5 catches for over 66 yards per game before missing the last 4 games of the 2011 season due to a suspension for a failed drug test.
Besides the character concerns, Davis must also overcome an improved WR corps, and a rookie QB in 2012. But it's fairly certain that Robert Griffin III will be an improvement over the tandem of Rex Grossman and John Beck from 2011.
Sleepers: Greg olsen:
Perhaps a huge fantasy football sleeper TE in 2012, Olsen is in a prime position to surprise and finish as a top 10 fantasy TE. While there's always the chance of a sophomore slump, Cam Newton should be a little better in 2012. Jeremy Shockey and his 37 receptions from 2011 are gone, meaning there should be an increase in Olsen's stats at the position. The WR corps for the Panthers is still fairly weak outside Steve Smith. If Olsen just gets half of Shockey's stats from 2011 added to him in 2012, he should finish with over 750 yards and 7 TD's.
After experiencing plenty of learning curves as a rookie during the 2011 season, the excellent pass catching hands of Rudolph could easily have him emerging as the top passing target in the Vikings offense in 2012. Built with a frame resembling Rob Gronkowski, Rudolph is a high upside TE pick in fantasy football leagues to begin the 2012 season.
2012 Stat Projections: 800 receiving yards, 8 touchdowns
With a torn ACL knocking Moeaki out for the entire 2011 season, he will be looking to rebound and return as one of the top receiving options in the Chiefs offense. Offering a solid red zone presence, anything in the range from 5-8 touchdowns is a possibility for Moeaki in 2012. With a TE ranking between #20-30 in fantasy football leagues, Moeaki is a worthwhile gamble as a late round pick in fantasy football drafts.
2012 Stat Projections: 600-800 receiving yards, 5-8 touchdowns
What about weekly fantasy football? What do you think. You look at the matchups this week. Pass on the too expensive tight end and play whoever is at home playing with a good qb and matchup for the week.