While we won’t know these players’ fantasy values until their landing spots are announced later this month, it is helpful to know what they do (and don’t do) well. Here’s a snap shot of the most commonly ranked tight ends. Stay tuned for more in-depth analysis via our LIVE draft show on April 26th and 27th!
Mike Gesicki, TE, Penn State
Fun Fact: An athlete with a capital “A,” lots of draftniks like to point out that Gesicki was a basketball (NJ state slam dunk contest winner) and volleyball standout in high school. I think it’s cooler that he lends his time raising awareness for rare diseases and championing kids with cancer.
Claim to fame: From the Senior Bowl to the Combine, Gesicki’s draft season has been on point. With hands crafted from butter and joints made of well-oiled springs, the New Jersey native has the best ball skills of any TE in the 2018 NFL draft. He’s, literally, leap-frogging the competition.
Trying to tame: He can’t run block.
Comp: Vernon Davis
Fantasy fit: The Lions haven’t been shy about demonstrating their affection for hyper-athletic tight ends in the early rounds of the draft. With an obvious need at the position, Gesicki could be a target for the team. Sorry, Luke Willson lovers.
Hayden Hurst, TE, South Carolina
Fun Fact: Hurst was selected in the 17th round of the 2012 MLB draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He played minor league ball for two years before joining the Gamecocks as a walk-on.
Claim to fame: A natural hands catcher with fluid athleticism and a giant frame (6’5” and 250 pounds).
Trying to tame: He’ll be 25-years-old (so, like, 100 in football years) at the start of the regular season. His in-line blocking mechanics need improvement.
Comp: Tormund Giantsbane, Greg Olsen
Fantasy fit: After releasing the similarly-sized Julius Thomas, the Dolphins have expressed an affection for Hurst. Adam Gase certainly knows how to use the position, particularly in the red area of field, which would allow the South Carolina product to make a more immediate impact than most rookies at his position.
Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State
Fun Fact: Has elevated the one-handed catch into an artistic expression.
Claim to fame: A former basketball player with outstanding body control and massive mitts (10.25”), Goedert can play all three levels of the field. He was highly productive in college, tallying a 92-1,293-11 stat line in 2016.
Trying to tame: Hailing from a smaller school and having limited blocking experience, there’s some concern that Goedert will take more than a few years to reach his full potential in the NFL.
Comp: Zach Ertz
Fantasy fit: Among mock drafters, New Orleans has been a trendy landing spot for the South Dakota native. I get it, but I think Seattle makes more sense. The team has shown interest in Goedert and there’s an obvious need with Jimmy Graham now in Green Bay. Plus, he’ll have an opportunity to learn behind Ed Dickson (stop laughing).
Mark Andrews, TE, Oklahoma
Fun Fact: The Arizona native was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at 9-years-old, but successfully manages the disease and believes it has made him a more disciplined football player.
Claim to fame: Baker Mayfield’s No. 1 target, Andrews is a former receiver who knows how to snag contested balls and has shown an advanced aptitude for route-running.
Trying to tame: He’s not a great blocker (limited experience) and lacks explosiveness.
Comp: Hunter Henry
Fantasy fit: Greg Olsen has been with the Panthers since 2012, and missed his first game due to injury (foot) last year. While he the 33-year-old vet has committed to play in 2018, the Panthers should be motivated to draft some depth behind him.
Troy Fumagalli, TE, Wisconsin
Fun Fact: Had the index finger on his left hand amputated when he was just two-days-old.
Claim to fame: A versatile and consistent player that can block and pass-catch.
Trying to tame: His enthusiasm for and dedication to the position makes up for his lack of athleticism.
Comp: Ben Watson
Fantasy fit: Houston won’t be on the clock in the first or second round, but they do have three picks in the third round. Now that C.J. Fiedorowicz has retired the Texans will need to add a player that can run block and work the middle of the field. Fumagalli is a nice fit that should still be on the board when the Texans step to the mic.
Where would you like to see each TE land? Follow Liz and tweet her your projected landing spots @LizLoza_FF.