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4 Best Ball Tight End Pairings to Draft (2024 Fantasy Football)

4 Best Ball Tight End Pairings to Draft (2024 Fantasy Football)

When it comes to best ball, there are two key areas where we can separate our rosters from the crowd: roster construction and player takes. The two intertwine nicely with roster construction concerning when we take certain players and how many of each group we roster in total, and the player takes help us to ascertain if someone is a good value at their current cost.

In this article, we’ll dive into the tight end position and examine some pairings that could help our rosters succeed.

All average draft position (ADP) is taken from Underdog’s Big Board contest.

Tight End Best Ball Pairings

Tight End Pairings

There are plenty of ways to attack the tight end position in best ball and year to year, the different methods vary in success rate, so it’s best to keep an open mind when dealing with one of the trickiest and least consistent positions in fantasy football. These pairings each lean into a different mindset and approach.

Mark Andrews (BAL) | 53.2 & T.J. Hockenson (MIN) | 97.4

If shooting for upside is your thing, then Mark Andrews and T.J. Hockenson represent plenty of it. Both players are coming off injuries, but Andrews at least made it back out onto the field before the end of the playoffs and that fitness is key to this strategy. Hockenson, meanwhile, likely misses at least the first month of the season, but with a stud like Andrews as our TE1 and coming at a high cost, we need Andrews to be able to carry the roster for a while anyway.

Andrews had a quiet year compared to some of his peak performances, but his six touchdowns led all tight ends at the time of his injury in Week 11 and his 12.1 yards per reception also led all tight ends. Hockenson should also see more consistent and competent quarterback play in 2024.

Trey McBride (ARI) | 72.9 & Cole Kmet (CHI) | 113.8

When talking about the tight end position, there are few who could take a bigger leap in 2024 than Trey McBride, who, once Zach Ertz got injured, saw his target share jump to 27% for the rest of the season, finishing as a top-twelve tight end in seven of the next nine games, despite managing only three touchdowns all year.

Positive touchdown regression seems a virtual lock for McBride with Kyler Murray‘s clean bill of health. Cole Kmet is a frustrating player for fantasy purposes, but much of his lack of consistency could be bundled in with the Bears’ offense in general. Now, with likely a new and better quarterback under center, Kmet can finally become a more consistent player.

Travis Kelce (KC) | 44.3 & Kyle Pitts (ATL) | 98.5

How to deal with Kyle Pitts is a question some people have gotten bored of asking at this point, but where there is ambiguity, there is opportunity, and as Pitts’s ADP drops year after year, at a certain point, it becomes hard to ignore. Pitts was first in air yards and deep targets among tight ends but 37th out of 37 tight ends in catchable target rate. 2024 surely has to finally bring an upgrade at quarterback for Pitts, who, it should be noted, played through the lingering effects of his MCL and PCL injury from 2022.

Travis Kelce might be losing half a step as gets closer to his mid-thirties, but his playoff run restored some faith with 70+ yards in all four games. At pick 44, Kelce is the cheapest he’s been in years.

George Kittle (SF) | 65.1 & Ja’Tavion Sanders (FA) | 199.5

It’s likely that with any rookie tight end, you might want to consider a three tight end build, as historically, they take longer to hit the ground than their counterparts at running back and wide receiver, but if you were going to build with just two, then it needs to be aiming for pure ceiling outcomes. Ja’Tavion Sanders had back-to-back years with 45+ catches and 600+ yards in college and is viewed as a very high-quality prospect by many.

In recent years, we’ve seen more pro-ready tight ends than previously, and at 199.5 in ADP, it’s an okay shot to take. George Kittle was as volatile as ever in 2023, with no more than three top-five finishes in a row at any point, but nine top-eight finishes are still worth our attention.

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