Fantasy Football Under the Radar – TE – 2020
Tyler Higbee – Los Angeles Rams
Tyler Higbee spent the first three years of his career as a blocking tight end in a very successful Rams offense. With Brandin Cooks, Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and Todd Gurley II racing all over the field and scoring TD’s by the bushel, it makes sense Higbee wasn’t that involved. He played his role and when the opportunity presented itself, Higbee capitalized. He had more receiving yards in his fourth season than he did in his first three years combined. He also added 3 TD’s in 2019 after scoring just 4 total in his first three seasons.
Even more telling is that the bulk of his yards and TD’s in 2019 occurred in December alone. In his last five games, 4 of 5 were for 100+ yards. He was targeted often and converted just as much. Higbee produced more in five games than fellow tight end Gerald Everett did in the twelve games played. It will be interesting to see if one emerges as a primary target or if a tight end by committee ruins both fantasy seasons.
Don’t forget to check out our other Fantasy Football Under the Radar Players!
Dawson Knox – Buffalo Bills
The Bills filled the tight end position last season with the selection of Dawson Knox in the 2019 draft. The 3rd round pick stands at 6’4” 254 pounds and primarily specialized in run blocking in his rookie year. The tight end is one of the more difficult positions to learn with both blocking schemes and receiver routes to absorb. Knox finished 23rd overall in receiving yards for a tight end and second to only Noah Fant for the rookie class.
388 receiving yards and 2 TD’s is not something to get excited about, but it does show that the Bills believe Knox is more than just a blocker. Knox finished with 50 targets, which was 3rd highest on the team. Imagine how much better the season would have looked without the 10 drops? If you take away those drops, with a 13.9 yards per catch average, you’re looking at a top 12 performance in receiving yards. Stefon Diggs and John Brown will stretch the field and give Knox a little more room to roam in the 5-10 yards from scrimmage range. Knox is worth keeping an eye on as Josh Allen and the Bills passing game evolves.
Cole Kmet – Chicago Bears
The Bears got a little help for Nick Foles this season by drafting Cole Kmet with the 45th overall pick. Kmet is huge for tight end at 6’6” 262 pounds but very nimble. He runs excellent routes and catches the ball naturally which gives him a split-second advantage before knocking heads with potential tacklers.
The Bear offense has little identity except being bad at everything. Foles will take advantage of Kmet in the short passing game so there is a little flicker of hope for a productive fantasy season. Jimmy Graham is also on the roster, but he’ll be in a mentor role very quickly.