One of my favorite things about fantasy football is that there are a ton of different scoring settings – single QB, Superflex leagues, dynasty leagues, full PPR, half PPR, points per first down, etc. etc. It allows commissioners to be creative and think outside the box to make the league as fun as possible. If you’re looking to join a league with other great owners, be sure to check out Fooclanleagues.com to play with other listeners of The Fantasy Footballers Podcast.

One new scoring format on the rise is tight end premium scoring, which helps to make the TE position more valuable in fantasy football. In normal PPR leagues every player, regardless of position, is awarded one point per reception. However, in most TE premium scoring formats, the TE is awarded 1.5 points per reception while RBs and WRs are only awarded one point. So, if you’re playing in a TE premium league, how should you value the TE position, and where should you draft them? Let’s dive in.

To start to answer these questions, let’s take a look at the scoring data for the top 10 TEs in standard PPR scoring vs. TE premium scoring from 2016-2019. Additionally, let’s look at where these TEs would have ranked among WRs in total fantasy points. Data is taken from Weeks 1-16.

2016
Player PPR Points WR Rank TE Premium Points WR Rank
Travis Kelce 221.2 13 263.7 5
Greg Olsen 202.1 19 242.1 7
Kyle Rudolph 180.3 32 221.8 13
Delanie Walker 179.6 34 212.1 16
Jimmy Graham 178.9 35 211.4 17
Cameron Brate 171.0 41 199.5 19
Martellus Bennett 155.8 46 183.3 32
Jordan Reed 155.6 47 188.6 26
Jason Witten 150.3 49 184.8 31
Dennis Pitta 148.8 50 191.8 25

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Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (PPR scoring): 2
Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (TE premium scoring): 6

2017
Player PPR Points WR Rank TE Premium Points WR Rank
Travis Kelce 233.5 9 275.0 3
Rob Gronkowski 227.3 11 261.8 4
Zach Ertz 198.0 17 235.0 11
Evan Engram 173.6 25 205.6 16
Delanie Walker 169.6 27 206.6 15
Jimmy Graham 163.5 30 192.0 22
Kyle Rudolph 156.9 33 185.4 29
Jack Doyle 155.2 34 195.2 20
Jason Witten 143.3 40 174.8 34
Cameron Brate 136.4 45 160.4 40

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Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (PPR scoring): 2
Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (TE premium scoring): 7

2018
Player PPR Points WR Rank TE Premium Points WR Rank
Travis Kelce 283.4 8 334.9 1
Zach Ertz 275.8 10 333.8 2
George Kittle 228.8 17 272.8 11
Eric Ebron 206.2 23 239.2 16
Jared Cook 187.8 27 221.8 19
Austin Hooper 151.3 41 186.8 29
Kyle Rudolph 145.5 44 177.5 30
Trey Burton 138.8 51 165.8 38
David Njoku 134.7 56 162.7 40
Rob Gronkowski 126.8 62 150.3 47

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Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (PPR scoring): 4
Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (TE premium scoring): 5

2019
Player PPR Points WR Rank TE Premium Points WR Rank
Travis Kelce 248.9 6 297.4 2
Zach Ertz 215.6 19 259.6 5
Mark Andrews 207.2 24 239.2 12
George Kittle 206.2 25 248.7 10
Darren Waller 204.3 26 249.3 8
Austin Hooper 180.2 35 217.7 23
Jared Cook 155.1 46 176.6 39
Tyler Higbee 138.0 55 172.5 40
Hunter Henry 135.0 56 162.5 46
Dallas Goedert 134.2 58 163.2 45

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Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (PPR scoring): 3
Number of TEs to finish as Top-24 WRs (TE premium scoring): 5

Conclusions

As seen in this data sample set, TE premium scoring plays a significant role in scoring at the TE position when comparing TE premium scoring to standard PPR scoring. In this 4-year sample size, an average of 2.75 TEs finished as WR2s or better in PPR scoring. However, in TE premium scoring, an average of 5.75 TEs finished as top-24 options if they were included in the WR position. For all you math wizards at home, about three more TEs every year are startable as a WR2 in TE premium leagues versus standard PPR leagues.

So, what’s the take-home? It is extremely advantageous to start two high ends TEs in your starting lineup every week in TE premium scoring, and top tier TEs should be drafted aggressively. The Travis Kelce, George Kittle, Mark Andrews, and Zach Ertz types are almost a cheat code over your opponents, especially given their ADP. In most cases these TEs are being under drafted, making them a value relative to their production. Based on data from previous seasons, these four TEs are all very likely to finish inside the top-20 scoring WRs, and you don’t have to draft them at that price.

Final Take Home

Based on this sample of data, it appears the optimal strategy is to roster at least two of the top four or five tight ends. By doing so, you’re likely to secure the equivalent of a WR1 and a WR2 on your roster at cheaper prices. In some cases, these two TEs could return WR1 value, as we saw in 2018 where Travis Kelce and Zach Ertz would have finished as the WR1 and WR2, respectively. It’s a massive advantage over your opponents to consistently play two high-end TEs in your lineup, with one TE in the flex. In normal PPR scoring leagues, this strategy is not recommended, but in TE premium, it appears to be the optimal move.

If you happen to miss out on two of the top TEs in your draft, it is not recommended to reach for other TEs, as the data shows that these players are unlikely to return the same value. Rather, employing a typical ‘start 1 TE’ approach appears to be beneficial in this scenario, filling in flex positions with RBs and WRs. Of course, taking some mid and late-round TEs to stash on the bench could return value, but don’t reach for middling TE options like Jared Cook, Dallas Goedert, or Jonnu Smith for example.

The post How to Value TEs in TE-Premium Leagues (Fantasy Football) appeared first on Fantasy Footballers Podcast.


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