Week 8 is the first week of the Bye-Pocalypse. With six teams on bye the next two weeks, our options for streaming are limited. This may include the return of some names who have wronged us in the past…but also the return of one of our heroes.
After one of the best weeks of the season in Week 6, the hangover was real last week.
There’s no way to sugarcoat those numbers. That sucked! The three streamers combined to score six fewer points than stream hall of famer and auto-correct’s worst nightmare C.J. Fiedorowicz did two weeks ago. Worse, I decided to pass on Jack Doyle, who only finished the week as TE1 (more on that later).
Unfortunately, it comes with the territory in streaming TEs. This is not like streaming QBs where volume and top-end production are more predictable because QBs are involved in every play. TEs do often end up being TD dependent, even in elite matchups. Consider this graph of the output of our streamers this season compared to the benchmarks of the TE6, TE12, and TE18 this season:
Last week notwithstanding, our top option has performed well this season. However, the second and third options have embodied the expression, “Some days you’re the dog and some days you’re the hydrant.” That’s good to keep in mind if you end up second-guessing yourself on going back to the well on some of the retreads this week. Trust the process but accept the consequences. If you are you streaming, then you should most likely have advantages at WR and/or RB anyway to counteract some of the lows of streaming TEs.
Yahoo Ownership: 31%
Draftkings: $3500 (TE9)
FanDuel: $4900 (TE16)
Well this one kind of goes without saying. I whiffed on Doyle in all of my leagues last week and left him off this list. I was scared off by Tennessee’s defense, which seems ridiculous in hindsight, and the hypothesis that Doyle could be used as more of a blocker. I did not give enough credit to the upside of being the sole Andrew Luck TE, which if you recall was the main reason I kept listing Dwayne Allen so high earlier in the season.
If anything, this feels like the week to fade Doyle on DraftKings with the big price increase, but he’s still in play as a streamer for seasonal leagues. The Chiefs have been among the stingiest teams in the league to TEs. Even in a week where Drew Brees unloaded for 367 yards, only 44 of them found their way to Coby Fleener. They have also only allowed one TD to a TE all season. However, with the dearth of options this week and the potential volume in play for Doyle, he is still a completely acceptable option if he’s still on your waiver wire.
Yahoo Ownership: 31%
Draftkings: $3200 (TE12)
FanDuel: $5200 (TE13)
Last week was a letdown for streamers of Cameron Brate, but I think there are reasons to stay the course. First, Tampa rushed 41 times against the 49ers, yet are only averaging 29 rush attempts per game this season. On the same note, Jameis Winston’s 30 pass attempts were tied for his lowest of the season. So it stands to reason that last week was a product of game plan. It also didn’t help that Mike Evans saw 43.3 percent of the team’s targets, which is way up from his already high 31.6 percent market share on the season.
The Buy Low Machine predicts a change in our luck this week, as it predicts another strong matchup for Brate against Oakland. The Raiders have not allowed less than 8 PPR points to a TE since Week 1. Their offense is fifth in points, which also bodes well for game script not going away from passing like it did last week. There’s still nothing all that intimidating about the Bucs other options, so it’s easy to see Brate being the number two option.
It is also worth reiterating what I said last week, which is that Brate has two more juicy matchups beyond this week with ATL and CHI. Brate has certainly been feast or famine since taking over the starting TE role, but if it’s ever going to happen again then it figures to be this week. If you used him last week, then you should be doubling down this week. If not and he’s on your waiver wire, then the time to act is now.
Yahoo Ownership: 8%
Draftkings: $2800 (TE16)
FanDuel: $4900 (TE15)
Hello, old friend! It does not feel as much of a reach to be streaming Fiedorowicz as it did the first time, but this does still feel strange, doesn’t it? After snagging just 21 balls in his first two seasons, Fiedorowicz has corralled 19 in the last four weeks. Even in a game last week where the Texans were embarrassed by the Broncos, he saw seven targets and tied for the team lead in PPR points for the week (it was 8.5 points but that was still the same amount DeAndre Hopkins had).
What’s amazing is that even with all of Brock Osweiler’s ineptitude, he’s finding a way to spread the ball to two TEs. In the last four games, Fiedorowicz has 28 targets and Ryan Griffin has 21. The two have combined for a ridiculous 24.6 percent market share. That’s somewhat of a concern because that seems unsustainable, but I am not ready to count on it this week. The Lions have allowed seven TDs to TEs this season and given up double-digit PPR points in every week but one. They have been the preeminent target for TEs this season. Even with all of the Texans’ offensive struggles, I cannot find any way around riding him again this week.