Undervalued TEs to target?

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Cameron Giles » Sat May 18, 2019 10:22 am

ninotoreS wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 1:56 am
Arians will have to turn over a new leaf with regard to TE pass-game usage for Howard to get up there with Kelce, Kittle, Ertz. etc.
Yeah, I can't see OJ becoming a 100 reception guy, but Arians is a smart offensive mind. He'll get the ball to the best players. He's never had a TE like Howard before and he should be in for a big year. People forget, but Howard last year was on pace for 900+ yards in Year 2.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Krypto_King » Sat May 18, 2019 12:01 pm

Ertz and Kittle were the only show in town last year, I think they come back to OJH just as much as he rises to them. Kelce is on an island this year

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby ninotoreS » Sat May 18, 2019 2:10 pm

blemly wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:29 am
ninotoreS wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 1:56 am
Arians will have to turn over a new leaf with regard to TE pass-game usage for Howard to get up there with Kelce, Kittle, Ertz. etc.
See, I just don’t buy this whatsoever. If you take a look back at the TEs Arians has had over the years I think it becomes pretty clear why he didn’t rely on them too much.

Tampa Bay night not be great this year, but after Evans and Godwin there will be a lot of targets available and, if OJH can stay healthy, I think he sees a lot of them. He’s as good a bet as any to break out into the T3 conversation, but even if he stays behind them there is still a lot of value in a T5 TE.
The degree of TE talent Arians has or has not had in the past isn't essential to my point.

(Which, btw, if he's never had an elite TE before, have you considered that maybe it's because he never wanted one? Still tangential to my point, though)
after Evans and Godwin there will be a lot of targets available
Here's the problem: that's unlikely to be enough targets to make Howard produce numbers on the Kelce/Ertz/Kittle level.

The 'top 3' fantasy TEs are usually characterized by a key circumstance: they are typically the #1 or #1b (or whatever) in their offense for pass-targets; they are at the top of the target totem-pole, or right below it. When there are exceptions to this rule, it's usually by grace of TD overachievement.

So I'm saying that for Howard to enter that territory of elite, every-week production, most liikely Arians would have to implement a system that emphasizes the TE as a pass-catcher to such an extent that it'll artificially manufacture more targets for Howard at Godwin and/or Evans' direct expense.

The Kelce/Ertz/Kittle zone for fantasy TE production is a rarified height -- it's so far above other TE1s that it's exasperating that we even nominally put them in the same category. To enter this hyper-elite echelon of fantasy TE production, Howard would probably have to usurp one of the top WRs for target-share completely, and significantly cut into the other's targets. Arians, in all his career, has never curtailed the target-share of talented WRs to feed a TE instead, even if he might be talented, too. (historical note: Rob Housler in Arizona was an excellent pass-catching TE prospect, so don't tell me Arians has never had high-ceiling talent at the position to mold and utilize)

All with Jameis Winston 'serving the pie'. Not to mention that Brate is returning.

Good luck! It's not a bet I'll make. I think for Howard to produce on the Kelce/Ertz/Kittle level, Evans or Godwin would have to suffer a season-ending injury early in the year.
Krypto_King wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 12:01 pm
Ertz and Kittle were the only show in town last year, I think they come back to OJH just as much as he rises to them. Kelce is on an island this year
Regarding Ertz... he has been remarkably consistent the last four years, so the outlier reception total last year isn't so strange. Jeffery was there, and Agholor, and then Golden Tate too after Week 8, so Ertz wasn't "the only show in town" at all. Wentz loves throwing to Ertz, and to the middle of the field in general, and Pedersen is content to oblige him. Ertz remains the best bet for targets leader again in Philly if he plays 16 games.

Regarding Kittle... if not an island, he's still on a peninsula. Pettis's expected breakout would siphon some targets away, but beyond Pettis, who else profiles for a major target load in '19? Deebo is a rookie. It's plausible -- perhaps likely -- Kittle will remain the #1a or #1b for targets in SF.
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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby ericanadian » Sat May 18, 2019 6:14 pm

blemly wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:29 am
ninotoreS wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 1:56 am
Arians will have to turn over a new leaf with regard to TE pass-game usage for Howard to get up there with Kelce, Kittle, Ertz. etc.
See, I just don’t buy this whatsoever. If you take a look back at the TEs Arians has had over the years I think it becomes pretty clear why he didn’t rely on them too much.

Tampa Bay night not be great this year, but after Evans and Godwin there will be a lot of targets available and, if OJH can stay healthy, I think he sees a lot of them. He’s as good a bet as any to break out into the T3 conversation, but even if he stays behind them there is still a lot of value in a T5 TE.
Heath Miller was a pretty solid TE and put up 71 - 816 - 8 immediately after Arians departure. Arians depresses TE value because he likes to work the deep ball and will hold the TE in to block in order to accomplish this. He exacerbated this issue when he was coach in Arizona by placing minimal priority on the offensive line. Howard can still be valuable (Miller had a decent year or two), but his value will be capped.
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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby FantasyFreak » Sat May 18, 2019 8:33 pm

Jack Doyle, perhaps. Ebron had groin surgery and his recovery could be a lengthy one.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Blueboy » Sat May 18, 2019 11:33 pm

ericanadian wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:14 pm
blemly wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:29 am
ninotoreS wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 1:56 am
Arians will have to turn over a new leaf with regard to TE pass-game usage for Howard to get up there with Kelce, Kittle, Ertz. etc.
See, I just don’t buy this whatsoever. If you take a look back at the TEs Arians has had over the years I think it becomes pretty clear why he didn’t rely on them too much.

Tampa Bay night not be great this year, but after Evans and Godwin there will be a lot of targets available and, if OJH can stay healthy, I think he sees a lot of them. He’s as good a bet as any to break out into the T3 conversation, but even if he stays behind them there is still a lot of value in a T5 TE.
Heath Miller was a pretty solid TE and put up 71 - 816 - 8 immediately after Arians departure. Arians depresses TE value because he likes to work the deep ball and will hold the TE in to block in order to accomplish this.
Worth noting that Howard might be the best deep-threat in the league at his position.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby esloan35 » Sun May 19, 2019 8:07 am

Any thoughts on Waller from the group? I am stashing him and drafted Moreau, he has been around awhile and failed to show up. Personal problems have limited him, but the depth on the Raiders is poor.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Cameron Giles » Sun May 19, 2019 8:51 am

ericanadian wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:14 pm
Heath Miller was a pretty solid TE and put up 71 - 816 - 8 immediately after Arians departure. Arians depresses TE value because he likes to work the deep ball and will hold the TE in to block in order to accomplish this. He exacerbated this issue when he was coach in Arizona by placing minimal priority on the offensive line. Howard can still be valuable (Miller had a decent year or two), but his value will be capped.
Arians has never had a TE like Howard. Howard can block, run routes and get downfield. 4.5 straight line speed for a 6'6, 251 lb TE is freakish on top of having big-time agility. Heath Miller is slow. Arians is one of the smarter offensive minds in the league. There's no way he's going to turn Howard into just a blocker, who sometimes catches the ball. Howard's value isn't capped at all. The upside is huge.

That narrative is why Howard is a great buy low right now:

- He was PFF's 2nd highest graded TE last year.
- Only Kittle and Kelce had higher receiving grades.
- He graded out as a plus in pass blocking and run blocking, so there's no reason to take him off the field.
- Was on pace for over 900 yards before injury
- Howard led the team in yards per target last year (11.8).
- Jameis Winston loves throwing to TE's. He ranks 3rd in the league since 2015 in touchdowns thrown to TE's.

TB's RB's suck and their defense is still bad. More likely than not, they'll be passing to win games. And with Adam Humphries (105 targets) and DeSean Jackson (74 targets in 12 games) gone, those targets are going to funnel to their top threats: Evans, Godwin, and Howard.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Bot101 » Sun May 19, 2019 9:06 am

Cameron Giles wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 8:51 am
ericanadian wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:14 pm
Heath Miller was a pretty solid TE and put up 71 - 816 - 8 immediately after Arians departure. Arians depresses TE value because he likes to work the deep ball and will hold the TE in to block in order to accomplish this. He exacerbated this issue when he was coach in Arizona by placing minimal priority on the offensive line. Howard can still be valuable (Miller had a decent year or two), but his value will be capped.
Arians has never had a TE like Howard. Howard can block, run routes and get downfield. 4.5 straight line speed for a 6'6, 251 lb TE is freakish on top of having big-time agility. Heath Miller is slow. Arians is one of the smarter offensive minds in the league. There's no way he's going to turn Howard into just a blocker, who sometimes catches the ball. Howard's value isn't capped at all. The upside is huge.

That narrative is why Howard is a great buy low right now:

- He was PFF's 2nd highest graded TE last year.
- Only Kittle and Kelce had higher receiving grades.
- He graded out as a plus in pass blocking and run blocking, so there's no reason to take him off the field.
- Was on pace for over 900 yards before injury
- Howard led the team in yards per target last year (11.8).
- Jameis Winston loves throwing to TE's. He ranks 3rd in the league since 2015 in touchdowns thrown to TE's.

TB's RB's suck and their defense is still bad. More likely than not, they'll be passing to win games. And with Adam Humphries (105 targets) and DeSean Jackson (74 targets in 12 games) gone, those targets are going to funnel to their top threats: Evans, Godwin, and Howard.
Pants just got a little tighter.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Pullo Vision » Sun May 19, 2019 10:40 am

Cameron Giles wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 8:51 am
ericanadian wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 6:14 pm
Heath Miller was a pretty solid TE and put up 71 - 816 - 8 immediately after Arians departure. Arians depresses TE value because he likes to work the deep ball and will hold the TE in to block in order to accomplish this. He exacerbated this issue when he was coach in Arizona by placing minimal priority on the offensive line. Howard can still be valuable (Miller had a decent year or two), but his value will be capped.
Arians has never had a TE like Howard. Howard can block, run routes and get downfield. 4.5 straight line speed for a 6'6, 251 lb TE is freakish on top of having big-time agility. Heath Miller is slow. Arians is one of the smarter offensive minds in the league. There's no way he's going to turn Howard into just a blocker, who sometimes catches the ball. Howard's value isn't capped at all. The upside is huge.

That narrative is why Howard is a great buy low right now:

- He was PFF's 2nd highest graded TE last year.
- Only Kittle and Kelce had higher receiving grades.
- He graded out as a plus in pass blocking and run blocking, so there's no reason to take him off the field.
- Was on pace for over 900 yards before injury
- Howard led the team in yards per target last year (11.8).
- Jameis Winston loves throwing to TE's. He ranks 3rd in the league since 2015 in touchdowns thrown to TE's.

TB's RB's suck and their defense is still bad. More likely than not, they'll be passing to win games. And with Adam Humphries (105 targets) and DeSean Jackson (74 targets in 12 games) gone, those targets are going to funnel to their top threats: Evans, Godwin, and Howard.
I appreciate you putting this together. It paints an encouraging story, but my two reasons for hesitating on committing to Howard where I have him are Arians himself and Brate. You can't change a tiger's stripes and many coaches/coordinators refuse to change how they coach despite the personnel they have. Sometimes, what they've got is a poor match for "their" scheme. Sometimes, the player has more skills then what that coach demands of the position. I could imagine a future coach restricting Hockenson to 6th man blocking duties because he wants to impose his will with the run game, despite Hockenson's (presumed NFL caliber) receiving ability.

Can Arians create an offensive that gives a significant receiving role for the TEs? I'm not gonna assume that must because his offenses have been potent in the past.

My other concern is the team has a TE that Winston seems to have a strong rapport with. In fact, that connection seems stronger than what he has with Howard. Brate's proven redzone/TD skills put a cap on Howard's ceiling at a minimum.

I have Howard on a team that's been struggling at TE for something like 6 years. I don't want to bail on a young TE who clearly has a lot going for him, but I'm seriously considering taking a TE value downgrade an getting lower valued TE dart throws I like better.
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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby Cameron Giles » Sun May 19, 2019 12:05 pm

Pullo Vision wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 10:40 am
I appreciate you putting this together. It paints an encouraging story, but my two reasons for hesitating on committing to Howard where I have him are Arians himself and Brate. You can't change a tiger's stripes and many coaches/coordinators refuse to change how they coach despite the personnel they have. Sometimes, what they've got is a poor match for "their" scheme. Sometimes, the player has more skills then what that coach demands of the position. I could imagine a future coach restricting Hockenson to 6th man blocking duties because he wants to impose his will with the run game, despite Hockenson's (presumed NFL caliber) receiving ability.

Can Arians create an offensive that gives a significant receiving role for the TEs? I'm not gonna assume that must because his offenses have been potent in the past.

My other concern is the team has a TE that Winston seems to have a strong rapport with. In fact, that connection seems stronger than what he has with Howard. Brate's proven redzone/TD skills put a cap on Howard's ceiling at a minimum.

I have Howard on a team that's been struggling at TE for something like 6 years. I don't want to bail on a young TE who clearly has a lot going for him, but I'm seriously considering taking a TE value downgrade an getting lower valued TE dart throws I like better.
Here are the Starting TE's Bruce Arians coached as an OC or HC in the NFL:

O.J. Santiago (2001)
Mark Campbell (2002)
Steve Heiden (2003)
Heath Miller (2007-2011)
Dwayne Allen (2012)
Coby Fleener (2012)
Rob Housler (2013)
John Carlson (2014)
Jermaine Gresham (2015-2017)

Which TE's on that list would you say were underused by Arians in relation to their talent and ability? The issue isn't that Arians offense isn't friendly towards TE's. The issue is that Arians never has coached a team where the TE was one of the teams best playmakers. Heath Miller was the closest thing he had and Miller posted one of his best seasons under Arians. Howard's talent is clear and obvious. I can't imagine Arians looking at him and regulating him to blocking duties.

As far as Cameron Brate, I wouldn't be concerned at all outside of 3rd down and RZ. Brate got 49 targets last year and TB is starting to use him less with how well Howard has played.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby ninotoreS » Sun May 19, 2019 4:18 pm

Er. I think that list undermines your argument.

Heath Miller was regarded as one of the NFL's best TEs for years; he just wasn't elite in fantasy terms, and the offense he was in may have had something to do with that. Fleener was the 34th pick in his draft, with freaky athleticism. In his prime, Allen was a smooth route-runner and pass-catcher (also an elite blocker) that conceivably could've become what Ertz is now for Philly. Rob Housler was a lot like Fleener.

edit: Oops, I've brain-farted and thought Gresham was a Cardinal in '13 and 14 -- nope, he was a Bengal. :oops:
Last edited by ninotoreS on Sun May 19, 2019 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby ninotoreS » Sun May 19, 2019 4:31 pm

Regardless, Howard is a fine buy right now. Unless Arians is truly a fool, Howard should get enough targets to be a mid-range TE1 in fantasy. Achieving more than that will probably require good luck with touchdowns.

I just question the notion Howard's poised for "top 3" fantasy superstardom. The target-share for that doesn't seem to be there, and the playcaller doesn't appear to be right for it, either.
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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby FantasyFreak » Sun May 19, 2019 4:41 pm

ninotoreS wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 4:31 pm
Regardless, Howard is a fine buy right now. Unless Arians is truly a fool, Howard should get enough targets to be a mid-range TE1 in fantasy. Achieving more than that will probably require good luck with touchdowns.

I just question the notion Howard's poised for "top 3" fantasy superstardom. The target-share for that doesn't seem to be there, and the playcaller doesn't appear to be right for it, either.
As someone who has Howard in multiple leagues, I agree. I just hope he can play a full season for once.

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Re: Undervalued TEs to target?

Postby honcho55 » Mon May 20, 2019 6:00 am

My take on Howard: he’s a no brainer for top TE asset in dynasty past the big three. Of course there’s legitimate concerns, and they’ve been brought up, but the pool isn’t very deep.

Howard was on pace to be TE 5 or 6 last year, which would’ve put him firmly in that second tier with Ebron and Cook. He outscored or was within a couple points of Ebron and Kittle for half the games through week 11. I know because I started the wrong damn one every week haha.

Anyways I’m that tier, Cook is a great redraft target, solid for a team in a window of competitiveness, but obviously: age. Ebron has an argument but personally I can’t project him to get 13 tds again.

Who else can you put up against Howard? Engram with obj out of town? Hooper to take another step? Njoku with obj and Landry ahead of him on the target list? I just don’t see it.

Don’t blame anyone for preferring cheaper options and hope they hit, but I don’t see how Howard isn’t the top bet for ascension to elite.
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