With plenty of fun Week 7 matchups on the horizon, fantasy managers will be examining and messing with their lineups until the very last second to try and get the most out of their team this week.
Tight end is one position where they can exploit matchups to maximize the number of points they score. Here are a couple of tight ends to start and two others to avoid heading into the weekend.
Tight End Starts
O.J. Howard, Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Chicago Bears
Howard has seen his role increase in recent weeks with Rob Gronkowski out with a rib injury. He saw the most productive of his season last week when he was thrown the ball eight times and brought in seven of them for 49 yards and his first TD of the season.
He should continue that this week, even against a Chicago defense that has been solid against tight ends this season. Brady has clearly formed a connection with Howard recently and we expect to see that continue to grow this week.
Mark Andrews, Baltimore Ravens vs. Cincinnati Bengals
Andrews has become one of Lamar Jackson’s favorite targets in recent weeks. He has two games with more than 100 receiving yards so far this season and has three scores in the last two weeks. He’s currently tied with Travis Kelce at the top of the receiving yards by a TE leaderboard with 468.
They’ll be facing off with a Bengals defense that’s been good against tight ends this season, but that probably won’t matter a ton. Andrews will continue to get targets, he already has the most on Baltimore’s roster this season with 44. So expect him to get a lot of chances to produce this weekend.
Tight End Sits
Noah Fant, Denver Broncos vs. Cleveland Browns
Fant has had a good season so far, with close to 300 yards and three touchdowns already. But he faces a lot of things going against him this week. He’s been limited at practice with a foot injury this week. On top of that, it’s a short week as they head to Cleveland to play on Thursday night. The Browns defense is good against tight ends too, ranking in the top 10 in the NFL. They’re giving up an average of just 9 fantasy points per game and have allowed just 16 catches to tight ends all season.
With all that going against Fant, sit him this week.
Mo Alie-Cox, Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers
Alie-Cox should be a hot item on the waiver wire to hold on to for the rest of the season, but he should stay on the bench this week. The big-bodied tight end is a huge red zone target, with just 10 catches this year and three of them coming down for scores. He’s seen his target share increase over the last three weeks too, going up to 12 in that span over the six targets he saw in the first three weeks of the season.
While it’s all trending upward for Alie-Cox, this week’s matchup doesn’t bode well for him. San Fran’s defense is one of the best in the NFL against opposing tight ends, allowing just 8 fantasy points per game to them. They’ve allowed opposing TEs to catch just 17 passes, with just one of them hitting paydirt.