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Dalton Schultz: Fantasy football draft profile for 2023 NFL season

We break down the outlook for Texans TE Dalton Schultz heading into the 2023 NFL season.

NFL: Houston Texans Minicamp Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Dalton Schultz’s numbers dipped a little last season after a career year with the Dallas Cowboys, thanks in part to an early-season injury. Still, he’s been one of the more productive tight ends in the NFL over the last three seasons. That was enough for the Houston Texans to take a flyer on him as a free agent, signing him to a one-year, $9 million contract where he’ll be expected to help a rookie quarterback adjust to life in the NFL.

2023 Fantasy Football: Dalton Schultz Profile

Recap of 2022 season

After a career year in 2021, a knee injury cost Schultz a pair of games last season. He finished the year with 57 catches on 89 targets for 577 yards, his lowest yardage total in three seasons. He did still manage to catch five touchdowns with the Cowboys last year, with another three in two playoff games, and despite playing only 15 regular season games, he was still second on the team in targets.

Updated Texans outlook

The Texans got a real makeover this year, centered on quarterback C.J. Stroud, who they acquired with the second overall pick in the NFL Draft. They also brought in veteran wide receiver Robert Woods, who, despite being in his 30s now, should at least give the rookie another option in the passing game.

Schultz was the team’s other major offensive acquisition this offseason. While he’s not the kind of athletic tight end who can stretch the field on a seam route, his steady hands will keep the chains moving and be a threat in the red zone.

Best-case scenario

As a security blanket for Stroud, Schultz could see a decent target volume, even on par with what he was used to in Dallas. And despite the addition of Woods, the Texans' receiver room is mostly filled with question marks—there’s potential there, but nobody really stands out. That could translate to Schultz being Stroud’s top option when he’s throwing the ball. We’re probably not looking at anything like his 2021 season, with 800+ yards and eight touchdowns, but his ceiling is close to that.

Worst-case scenario

Despite the arrow finally pointing up, the Texans aren’t going to be lighting the world on fire this season. That could make it hard for Schultz to post the kind of top 10 numbers we’d like to see, and it’s possible, as a floor, that he could barely crack the top 20 among tight ends.

Prediction

Just by being the team’s top pass catcher by default, Schultz should see enough target volume to make him a solid addition to fantasy football lineups, especially in PPR leagues. He’s likely going to be a TE2 option.