Updated Thursday, Dec. 6 at 4:03 p.m. ET
Our PFW editors offer their late-week fantasy tips for tight ends, in which Jermichael Finley is back on the rise and the Lions' tight ends are getting more valuable in the wake of wide receiver injuries.
Packers TE Jermichael Finley has been coming on a bit in recent weeks and could be primed for a big game in prime time Sunday night, going up against a Lions pass defense that allowed Andrew Luck 391 yards and four TD passes last Sunday, including one to Colts TE Coby Fleener. Finley has at least 51 yards receiving in each of the last three games, including a 3-66-1 outing in Green Bay’s 24-20 win over Detroit in Week 11.
Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph is a little banged up from a shoulder injury and was limited in practice this week. Keep an eye on him, but he should play — and be a decent matchup — against the Packers.
Owners in bigger leagues who are in need of TE help might want to give the Lions’ Tony Scheffler a look. Scheffler has been targeted 21 times in the last three games, catching 10-134-0 in that span. While Scheffler doesn’t have a TD catch this season, he’s gaining 13.1 yards per catch (27-354). Scheffler’s value could increase with the Lions getting progressively thinner at wideout. The same can be said for Lions TE Brandon Pettigrew, who’s second on the club with 99 targets and should be considered a strong play in all formats going forward.
Owners should keep an eye on Panthers TE Greg Olsen’s status heading into Sunday’s game vs. the Falcons. Olsen has been bothered by a back injury, but he will fit as a low-end No. 1 TE in most formats if he’s active Sunday. Olsen, who made one catch (a 47-yard TD) last week, made six catches for 89 yards and a TD at Atlanta in Week Four.
Ravens TE Dennis Pitta is a viable starting option in bigger leagues in Week 14 vs. Washington. The Redskins gave up five catches for 82 yards and a TD to Giants TE Martellus Bennett on Monday night.
With Dustin Keller likely out (ankle), Jeff Cumberland returns to being the Jets’ top tight end. Cumberland has 21 catches for 233 yards and two touchdowns this season, and while he’ll see more targets on Sunday in Jacksonville, he is still only worth a start in deep leagues as an injury fill-in.