Fantasy football: Pitts, Ferguson among 4 must-start tight ends for Week 9

Dallas Cowboys tight end Jake Ferguson (L) scores an 18-yard touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI
1 of 5 | Dallas Cowboys tight end Jake Ferguson (L) scores an 18-yard touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo

MIAMI, Nov. 2 (UPI) -- Kyle Pitts and Jake Ferguson are among my four must-start tight ends for Week 9 of the fantasy football season.

If you need more options for your roster, check out my top add/drops article. My Week 9 rankings for running backs, wide receivers and quarterbacks also are available and will be updated throughout the week.


Mark Andrews, Dallas Goedert, Travis Kelce, T.J. Hockenson and Dalton Kincaid lead my Top 20 rankings, which are listed below. Ferguson, Logan Thomas, Dalton Schultz, Pitts and Luke Musgrave round out my Top 10 plays.

Players from the Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars and San Francisco 49ers should either be benched or dropped in redraft leagues, as those teams have Week 9 byes.


Those with stock in Darren Waller and other injured tight ends should monitor their status before plugging them into starting lineups.

Dalton Kincaid

Kincaid, my No. 5 play for Week 9, scored the first touchdown of his NFL career in Week 8. The rookie tight end totaled 65 yards on five catches in that Buffalo Bills victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Kincaid also logged eight catches for 75 yards in Week 7. This week, the Bills will face the Cincinnati Bengals in a game I expect to be a high-scoring shootout.

The Bengals allowed the most fantasy points, second-most touchdowns, third-most yards and fifth-most catches per game to tight ends through eight weeks. They also just surrendered 149 yards on nine catches in Week 8 to George Kittle and allowed a total of four scores to the position.

Look for Kincaid to earn at least eight targets in this matchup, as Bengals defenders focus on the Bills' outside pass-catching threats. He should turn those opportunties into at least six catches for 70 yards and a score.

Tight end Jake Ferguson (R) and the Dallas Cowboys will battle the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday in Philadelphia. File Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI

Jake Ferguson

Ferguson is my No. 6 option for Week 9, as the Dallas Cowboys prepare for their NFC East division clash with the Philadelphia Eagles.

The second-year tight end scored his second touchdown of the season in Week 8, when he hauled in four catches for 47 yards. He remains a touchdown-or-bust play, but I love his potential to find the end zone again in what should be another high-scoring matchup.

The Eagles pass defense has been one of the most generous in the NFL so far this season. They haven't been awful at defending opposing tight ends, but did tie for allowing the second-most receiving scores (four) to the position through eight weeks.

Ferguson can be plugged in as a starter this week in all leagues that require starting tight ends.

Tight end Logan Thomas (R) and the Washington Commanders will face the New England Patriots on Sunday in Foxborough, Mass. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI

Logan Thomas

Thomas logged six catches for 55 yards and a score in the Washington Commanders' loss to the Eagles in Week 8. The veteran tight end earned at least six targets in three of his last four games. He also eclipsed 40 yards in five games this season and scored in two of his last four appearances.


This week, the Commanders will face the New England Patriots. The Patriots allowed more than 44 yards per game to tight ends so far, which should be an easy benchmark for Thomas to reach Sunday in Foxborough. I also expect the Commanders to move forward with their pass-heavy offensive approach, which should lead to production for Thomas and other pass catchers.

He is my No. 7 play for Week 9.

Tight end Kyle Pitts and the Atlanta Falcons will host the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday in Atlanta. File Photo by James Atoa/UPI

Kyle Pitts

Not much is going well for the Atlanta Falcons passing offense, leading coach Arthur Smith to bench starting quarterback Desmond Ridder in Week 9. Top wide receiver Drake London is also dealing with a groin injury.

The Falcons will face the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday in Atlanta. I expect the quarterback change to result in a slight boost to the Falcons passing game. Pitts also could draw more looks due to London's injury and potential absence.

The Falcons tight end caught at least three passes in each of his last four games. He received at least five targets in six of his last seven appearances. Look for that target total to move closer to 10 in this matchup. Pitts should convert those looks into at least five catches for 70 yards against the Vikings. He is my No. 9 option.

Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews (R) leads my Week 9 rankings. File Photo by Aaron Josefczyk/UPI

Week 9 fantasy football tight end rankings

1. Mark Andrews, Baltimore Ravens vs. SEA

2. Dallas Goedert, Philadelphia Eagles vs. DAL

3. Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs vs. MIA

4. T.J. Hockenson, Minnesota Vikings at ATL

5. Dalton Kincaid, Buffalo Bills at CIN

6. Jake Ferguson, Dallas Cowboys at PHI

7. Logan Thomas, Washington Commanders at NE

8. Dalton Schultz, Houston Texans vs. TB

9. Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons vs. MIN

10. Luke Musgrave, Green Bay Packers vs. LAR

11. Taysom Hill, New Orleans Saints vs. CHI

12. Tyler Conklin, New York Jets vs. LAC

13. Trey McBride, Arizona Cardinals at CLE

14. Donald Parham, Jr., Los Angeles Chargers at NYJ

15. Cole Kmet, Chicago Bears at NO

16. Hunter Henry, New England Patriots vs. WAS

17. Cade Otton, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at HOU

18. David Njoku, Cleveland Browns vs. ARI

19. Kylen Gransen, Indianapolis Colts at CAR

20. Jonnu Smith, Atlanta Falcons vs. MIN

NFL: Dallas Cowboys overwhelm Los Angeles Rams

The Dallas Cowboys' DeRon Bland (C) celebrates his interception return for a touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on October 29, 2023. The Cowboys beat the Rams 43-20. Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo

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