But if you wait on a tight end in your fantasy football draft, there are still plenty of great options available at the position.
That is why, at UPI, we have ranked our top 25 tight ends for your 2018 fantasy football draft kit.
SCROLL DOWN FOR TOP 25
For clarity, here are some of the best tight ends to look out for in five separate tiers, as well as some unheralded sleepers.
HALL OF FAME
1. Rob Gronkowski, 3. Zach Ertz
One of the red flags over the years that came with drafting Rob Gronkowski was his injury history. But Gronk has played at least 14 games in two of the last three seasons. Last year, Gronk pulled in 69 receptions for 1,084 yards and eight scores in 14 games in 2017. He is a lock to produce similar numbers in 2018, especially with the offseason departures of Bradin Cooks and Danny Amendola, as well as the suspension of Julian Edelman. Look for a huge target number this year from Gronkowski.
Zach Ertz had a breakout year in 2017 for the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles. Ertz pulled down a career-high 78 receptions and eight touchdowns. He also had 816 yards on 106 targets. The Eagles lost Tre Burton and Torrey Smith in the offseason, but brought in Mike Wallace. Still, I expect Ertz to receive even more targets in 2018 and he could end up leading the league's tight ends in touchdown receptions as a result of that increase in looks. He is my No. 3 option at the position for 2018.
A new city, a new superstar quarterback. That is Jimmy Graham track record during his NFL career.First he had Drew Brees. Then it was Russell Wilson. Now Graham is playing with two-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers. Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb told UPI that Graham looks like he did during his Saints days. That means we could be looking forward to a ton of targets and touchdowns from the five-time Pro Bowl selection. Graham is my No. 4 tight end and he can give you a weekly advantage at the position with his ability to score.
New York Giants target Evan Engram had 722 yards and six scores on 64 receptions during his rookie campaign last season. Look forward to an increase in each category from the second-year tight end, who is my No. 6 option at the position entering the 2018 fantasy football season.
7. Tre Burton, 9. Jordan Reed
Tre Burton is now with the Chicago Bears and should make a big impact immediately. The 6-foot-3, 235-pound target should be leaned on in Chicago by young gunslinger Mitchell Trubisky. Last year, Burton picked up 248 yards and five scores on 23 receptions amid a loaded roster of offensive talent. This year he should be more of a focal point. Burton is my No. 7 option at the position and should be a reliable TE1 throughout the season, based on the matchup.
Washington Redskins tight end Jordan Reed is my No. 9 option at the position. The 2016 Pro Bowl selection picked up two scores and 211 yards in just six games last season, but could be in line for more targets with the arrival of Alex Smith. Reed might have the highest upside of any of these tight ends, but has been hampered by injuries throughout his NFL tenure. If you draft him, you will need to draft an insurance policy to fill in at the position.
JUST NAPPING [EARLY TO MID-ROUND SLEEPERS]
Cleveland Browns target David Njoku was the No. 29 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. Last season, he had 386 yards and four scores on 32 receptions. This year the Browns are loaded with offensive talent. Njoku should see his looks increase with the addition of Jarvis Landry and Josh Gordon outside. I expect him to make it inside the top 10 for tight in production some weeks, based on matchup.
Indianapolis Colts target Jack Doyle had a breakout season in 2017, without Andrew Luck throwing him the ball. That fact should be enough for you to think Doyle deserves draft consideration and could end up as one of the best tight ends in fantasy football this season. Doyle is my No. 12 option at the position, following his 2017 Pro Bowl campaign, which includied 80 catches for 690 yards and four scores on 108 targets. He could be a great value pick in you draft.
DRIFTING OFF [MID TO LATE-ROUND SLEEPERS]
Top 25 Fantasy Football Tight End Rankings
1. Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots, Bye Week 11
2. Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles, Bye Week 9
3. Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs, Bye Week 12
4. Jimmy Graham, Green Bay Packers, Bye Week 7
6. Evan Engram, New York Giants, Bye Week 9
7. Tre Burton, Chicago Bears, Bye Week 5
9. Jordan Reed, Washington Redskins, Bye Week 4
11. David Njoku, Cleveland Browns, Bye Week 11
12. Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts, Bye Week 9
13. Tyler Eifert, Cincinnati Bengals, Bye Week 9
14. George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers, Bye Week 11
15. Charles Clay, Buffalo Bills, Bye Week 11
17. Eric Ebron, Indianapolis Colts, Bye Week 9
18. Mike Gesicki, Miami Dolphins, Bye Week 11
20. Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Bye Week 5
21. Antonio Gates, Los Angeles Chargers, Bye Week 8
23. Jake Butt, Denver Broncos, Bye Week 10
25. O.J. Howard, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Bye Week 5.