Recently, I wrote a draft strategy article based on tight end premium leagues and when the fruitful time to draft them was. My findings from the 2022 draft results were to take the elite options early or wait until the 6-10 round range to take your first one instead of reaching for a pseudo-elite option early. Today, I wanted to discuss the options in this range and why they’re worth “waiting” on. For context, the tight ends in this range are typically TE12+.

Balling Out 

It’s not often you find teammates that are both worthy of high draft capital at this position, and it’s definitely not enough to find them at a MAC school. Brady Hunt and Tanner Koziol aren’t your normal MAC tight end group, that’s for sure. Hunt saw 5.3 targets per game in 2022 and turned it into a stat line of 46/498/5. This is nice production for the position and should only get better with a likely higher target rate (13.2% of team targets). The receiver room is thin and loses its top two options in 2022, Jayshon Jackson and Yo’Heinz Tyler. Those two accounted for over 44% of team targets and now provide some upside to Hunt as well as Koziol.

Koziol is super appealing due to his freshman-year production, specifically in the red zone. He had seven touchdowns, which should surprise no one considering his 6’7″, 230 lb. frame. Koziol actually saw .4 more targets per game than Hunt but wasn’t as efficient. He had five fewer receptions than Hunt on 11 more targets. Both of these Cardinals’ tight ends are great options in 2023.

More MAC-tion

Courtesy of @fannin_jr on Twitter

What’s in the water in the MAC these days? Another great option in this range is Harold Fannin of Bowling Green. The sophomore only saw 2.3 targets per game in 2022 but impressed us all with his early playing time and ten rushing attempts for four rushing touchdowns. The coaches clearly love Fannin. Otherwise, how psychotic are you to utilize a true freshman tight end at the goalline? 

Last year’s starter, Christian Sims, saw 5.8 targets per game, ending with 45 receptions and 458 yards on the season. If we see similar production mixed with 3-4 rushing touchdowns, then Fannin makes for an elite option. The only thing to beware of is your premium scoring, as some leagues only give bonuses for receptions rather than a 1.5x multiplier on the overall fantasy score.

Crabcakes and Tight Ends – That’s What Maryland Does

Ok, so maybe the second part isn’t always true, but I think Corey Dyches has a legit shot at being a top-ten tight end in 2023. If you look at this scoring format, he produced eight games of double-digit fantasy points and has some nice upside considering Maryland lost what feels like every receiver on their roster. They have a few nice transfers into the program. Don’t forget that Dyches saw the third most targets on the team last season (4.1 per game). It’s also kind of nice that CJ Dippre, the team’s TE2 last season, has moved on to Alabama. 

A Shot From Deep

Courtesy of HawkFanatic (Before Transfer to FIU)

Josiah Miamen probably isn’t going to end up with top-ten-round ADP in tight end premium leagues. If, for some reason, everyone goes crazy and you need a deeper option, then I think he’s your guy. Hat tip to The CFF Site for bringing him up to me in conversations about him being a great 2023 option! With Rivaldo Fairweather now an Auburn Tiger, this opens the door for Miamen to be a nice option in the FIU passing attack. Their QB play is adequate, but their offensive coordinator, David Yost, has shown to throw to tight ends in the past. Just last year, Fairweather saw 47 targets, while Miamen ended the year with 38. With Fairweather gone, do we see the potential for 50+ targets for Miamen in 2023?

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