By Staff Writer John Belaska
10. Heath Miller
Heath Miller is a consistent starting tight end in all fantasy formats. He is a bit more valuable in standard scoring leagues than in PPR leagues. Most of his value comes from his ability to score touchdowns. Basically, if he does not score he is mediocre to average at best. However, there are sometimes when he has a huge game. If you draft Miller in a PPR league, consider drafting another tight end that could be more consist and rotate the two based on matchups.
9. Jordan Reed
Jordan Reed is primed for a breakout season in 2014. The only problem with him in PPR leagues is his consistency. He missed half the 2013 season due to injury, but when he did play he would have a great game followed by a bust. The tight end position needs to produce a consistent number of catches in PPR leagues in order to be relevant. Reed is not there yet, but he could become a top tight end by the end of the season.
8. Charles Clay
Charles Clay is a very consistent tight end in PPR leagues and standard scoring formats. He is a great choice for owners who waited too long to grab one of the top ranked tight ends. He is the type of player who will always keep you in the game and sometimes even win it for you.
We cannot expect Julius Thomas to be as productive as he was in 2013. This is because we cannot expect Peyton Manning to have a record setting year. Thomas was much more valuable in standard scoring leagues than he was in PPR formats. He was always a threat in the red zone, but he did not get nearly as many catches as some of the other top ranked tight ends. Expect his numbers to go down in 2014 all across the board.
6. Cameron Jordan
Cameron Jordan is much more valuable in PPR leagues than he is in standard scoring leagues. This will be especially true in 2014. With Josh Gordon done for the season, Jordan is really the only target the Browns have in their passing game. He should haul in tons of passes this year.
5. Greg Olsen
Greg Olsen is the tight end who just always seems to be forgotten about. It is probably because he has always been a borderline top five tight end, but never a top three. Greg Olsen is very consistent. He will never put up a goose egg in your fantasy points column. He very rarely has huge games, but he is always going to be there for an owner who just needs a solid performer week in and week out.
4. Jason Witten
Jason Witten is a pass catching machine. Not only is he one of the best tight ends in standard scoring leagues, but he is also great in PPR leagues. He is able to haul in between 75 and 85 catches each season. He will have a number of games throughout the season where he will get eight or nine receptions. This just shows he is capable of not only being consistent, but also putting up a monster game every now and then.
If we knew he was going to be health all season, he would easily be the best tight end in PPR leagues. Since this cannot be guaranteed, he has to drop to number three. If you put him at number two, nobody should have a problem with that either. Consider this; in the very limited number of games Gronk played in 2013 he managed to haul in 39 catches. That is better than some tight ends do all season.
2. Vernon Davis
If Vernon Davis was not such a threat in the 49ers deep passing game, he would not be number two on this list. He may not even make the top five. He just does get many receptions. However, what he does when he does catch the ball is amazing. He is one of the only tight ends that are used as a deep route runner. This means he has potential to score from anywhere on the field at any time.
1. Jimmy Graham
No questions here; Jimmy Graham is the best tight end in any type of fantasy league. He led all tight ends in receiving yards, receptions, and touchdowns in 2013. He is definitely going to want to show the Saints front office is worth a huge contract extension this season. If they do not want him, he will get his money from somewhere else. Either way, Graham is going to play with a fire in his belly this season.