In total, it was a done year for the tight end in terms of receiving yardage. Only Travis Kelce broke the 1000-yard mark with 1,338. TJ Hockenson finished with a tick over 900 with his time in Detroit and Minnesota combined.
Kyle Pitts, after a record setting season in 2022, fell off and finished with only 350 yards. Evan Engram found a new home in Jacksonville and finished 4th with 766 yards. The biggest surprise was probably Pat Freiermuth, who finished 6th, despite having Kenny Pickett for majority of the time throwing to him.
We will be taking into account some important factors when handicapping these totals. Strength of schedule will be one of these factors. Players may face easier teams on their schedule in terms of defensive matchups. Injury history will be another factor.
This is likely to play into some under plays when looking at the possibility to get a number that we feel may be attainable for a player, pending they play an entire season.
Changes in coaching staffs and contract status will be a couple of the other factors. We may see a player that has put up decent numbers in years past, but now has a head coach or coordinator that has history of utilizing said players position more. The opposite can remain true as well.
With contract status, we will be leaning on going under on players that have signed fat contracts and leaning over on players that are on the last year of their current contracts.
We stated in the opening that Engram had a strong season in his new home with the Jags last season. Finishing with over 750 yards in his 1st season with the franchise, one would think he should improve more in year two.
However, Calvin Ridley has since joined the team and will be a downfield target for Lawrence and likely take away opportunities for Engram to rack up those yards like he did last season. Somewhere around 550 is where we see Engram finishing this season.
Health. That is what is likely to determine how this play goes for us. If Andrews can stay healthy, he should clear this total with ease.
His last full season happened to be with Lamar Jackson playing majority of snaps in 2021 and he finished with a whopping 1,361 yards. Jackson is back and Andrews should be the main benefactor from that.
Kyle Pitts completely fell off last season. Matt Ryan was no longer running the show and the team finally ended with Desmond Ridder at QB to finish out most of the season.
Ridder looked overwhelmed at times and never could build a connection with Pitts. The lack of WR threats also hurt Pitts in that teams could key on him.
Drake London did emerge late in his rookie season as a threat at wide out, but he will need to be much better in order to help Ridder and open the field a bit for Pitts. That is asking a lot for an offense that just does not look ready to make a leap this season.
Dallas was 1 touchdown short from going over this number last season. The year prior, he only surpassed it 1.
With the Eagles being such a high-powered offense and defenses getting an entire offseason to prepare for what Hurts can do with his legs and what his connection with AJ Brown can produce, we believe Goedert will get to see more opportunities.
Pitts finished with only 2 touchdowns last season. We were high in his over last year with the idea being that he had so many receptions the previous year, he would have so many opportunities that it would be likely he goes over.
Unfortunately, that did not pan out for us. This season, he will be running routes for Desmond Ridder who did not look all that great last season. It should be a re-building year for the Falcons and Pitts’s numbers should suffer a bit.
Hockenson spent time with both the Lions and the Vikings last season. Interestingly, he scored 3 touchdowns with both teams to finish with 6 total.
While on Minnesota, Irv Smith was on the roster and took opportunities away from TJ. Smith scored just twice but that does not account for the targets that went his way instead of TJ’s.
This season, Irv Smith is on Cincy and Hockenson will have had a full offseason to form a relationship with Kirk Cousins.