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Jermichael Finley, Maeby Funke, and TE Age
Jermichael Finley
Jeff The Reader: That place seems so old for you.
Maeby: I’ll send Dr. Epstein your compliments. And may I add, “marry me”?
Jeff The Reader: Okay.

 Or, if that’s too esoteric:

Lindsay: Okay. Well, uh, this was fun. Maybe later we can all spend a little more time together, go shopping, get a drink.
Maeby: I’m in school, and I’m 15.

So by now you probably know the RotoViz Dynasty startup is in full swing. My dynasty squads tend to be extremely youth-oriented, perhaps to the point of detriment. Most of us have a pretty good idea of when individuals came into the league, but sometimes their ages at arrival are pretty surprising. When guys are far younger or far older than perception, it does impact their potential upsides and the likely number of years they’ll be available to your squad.

Don’t overreact to his information. It’s just a small but interesting piece of the overall evaluative framework.

Most of the players I’ve paired together are of similar ages. In each case, I would have guessed one player was significantly younger/older than the other. (Ages are of Sept. 1 this year.)

TE Age and Dynasty Value

Jermichael Finley (26) is younger than Jimmy Graham (26). I’m not suggesting you should draft Finley anywhere in the range of Graham, but there might be an exploitable inefficiency here. Graham went off the board No. 14 overall to the esteemed Bryan Fontaine, and I drafted Finley at No. 122. Finley does play with the best quarterback in the NFL and was considered to be on a similar trajectory to Graham just a couple of years ago. I once selected Finley in the first round of a league in the TE-heavy Footballguys Players Championship (and before you discount everything else you’re about to read, I did win the league anyway).

Martellus Bennett (26) is only a month older than Jared Cook (26), scored more points last year, and is the much better all-around player. Both players are switching teams. Bennett joins the Bears where he will play with Jay Cutler and possibly be the No. 2 target behind Brandon Marshall. Cook moves over to St. Louis where he gets to play with Sam Bradford and compete for targets with Tavon Austin, Brian Quick, Chris Givens, and Stedman Bailey. Cook went off the board at 102. Bennett at 142.

Rob Gronkowski (24) is younger than Coby Fleener (24) and Rob Housler (25). Obviously you won’t be taking Fleener or Housler anywhere close to Gronkowski, but when you’re trying to adjust for Gronkowski’s injuries, it’s worth remembering that he’s very young. That doesn’t matter at all if he develops a degenerative condition, but if he just needs time to heal, well, he has it. On the other hand, those looking for big breakouts from Fleener and Housler should consider their relatively advanced ages. Fleener was very old when he was putting up big numbers with Andrew Luck in college, and that kind of thing bodes poorly for a player’s future ceiling.

Brandon Pettigrew (28), Greg Olsen (28), Dennis Pitta (28), and Vernon Davis (29) are all . . . old. In fact, they’re all older than forgotten man Zach Miller (27) in Seattle. Okay, 28 isn’t exactly old, but it’s probably a little closer to greybeard status than you might have guessed before looking it up. The foursome should all represent excellent value in redraft formats. Despite a shocking lack of career efficiency, Pettigrew and Olsen both seem primed for high volume campaigns. Pitta and Davis could each see a windfall in light of departures and injuries. In dynasty formats they’re all probably overvalued.

Age is an important factor in the RotoViz TE Similarity Scores. Try the App to see which players are due for a big redraft season.

For more Maeby-related material and a few notes on player age, check out Matthew Stafford and QB AgeTrent Richardson and RB Age, and Sidney Rice and WR Age.

For the Dynasty insights of RotoViz contributor and PFF Dynasty guru Bryan Fontaine, check out the PFF Rankings.

Shawn Siegele is the creator of the contrarian sports website Money in the Banana Stand and Lead Redraft Writer for Pro Football Focus Fantasy.

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