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Faceoff: Discussing 1.5 PPR for TEs

August 28th

Clayton Gray: The FFPC and FPC award 1.5 points for a reception by tight ends but only a single point to running backs and wide receivers. How significant is this?

Will Grant: Big. Really big. I didn't believe it at first, but after playing in a league or two with this format, you can really see how it makes a difference. Especially if you have a flex position and you can land two of the top tier Tight Ends. I've seen guys like Rob Gronkowski go as high as #3 overall in a 1.5 PPR mock draft this year. I don't know if I have the guts to do that, but if I'm sitting in one of the middle slots (6-9 overall in the first round), I would think long and hard about taking a top tier Tight End with my first pick. Your top tight ends are catching more than 80 balls a season now. That's 40 more fantasy points than a WR with similar stats. In a 12 team league with Tight End Required and 1 flex, you probably have 14 tight ends starting each week. Gronk was the top TE with 90 receptions. Jimmy Graham was #2 with 99. #14 was Jared Cook with 49 receptions. That's 4 more points a game just based on receptions. It's too good to pass up, even in the 1st round.

Andy Hicks: An extra 45 points to Rob Gronkowski moves him up to 3rd overall based on last years stats, Jimmy Graham up to 7th and for the other top Tight Ends moves them up 1 or 2 rounds.

This rule was obviously implemented before last year, when the tight end scores went through the roof and it was probably an attempt to move the baselines and get more variety in draft selections, rather than the RBs first, then the WRs, then the QBs and then TEs approach.

Now you can select players at 4 positions in the first few rounds without raising an eyelid. Giving the TE a points advantage does mean more of them will be selected in this format earlier than in other formats, but the same applies to leagues that award 6 points for a passing TD or start 2 QBs or only 1 RB etc. Knowing how your league works in format and point scoring is fundamental to success.

Jeff Pasquino: It matters, but not for the reasons you think. This scoring rule and the overall perception that the NFL has gone towards tight ends all over the place are driving the price of tight ends through the roof. Jimmy Graham and Rob Gronkowski are Top 25 picks in every FPC draft I have seen, but can you guarantee that they get 80+ catches again this year and double-digit touchdowns? That's a risky proposition.

In my studies of the FPC over the past few years, I've tracked receptions for tight ends. Here's the table:


While 2011 and 2009 are big years for 70+ catch tight ends, that translates to only two points a fantasy game. Drafting a tight end too early costs you value at RB and WR, so it is often best to wait for the value section of the tight end pool for you to grab your two tight ends. That's in the TE8-TE14 range. You cannot wait forever at tight end as other team owners will be grabbing them (usually 2-3 rounds to early) but let the first 6-7 go off the board and let value fall to you at RB and WR as a result - then grab solid options like Tony Gonzalez and Fred Davis and be happy about it.

Maurile Tremblay: I'd have no problem taking Jimmy Graham or Rob Gronkowsi in the first half of the first round, and I'd look to follow those picks up with another very good fantasy TE within the next few rounds after that.

Getting 1.5 points per reception not only separates the top tight ends that much further from the pack, but it also gives them excellent value as flex players. The extra half point will give the top 5-6 tight ends an extra 35+ fantasy points on the season. That means that some of the second- and third-round tight ends will be projected to outscore some of the first- and second-round running backs and wide receivers. That gives them really great flex value.

Of course, you're not going to be able to start your second TE in the flex spot if you don't grab your first TE very early. (It goes without saying that you can't grab your second TE until after you've already grabbed your first.) So the FFPC and FPC scoring systems and lineup requirements make the top handful of tight ends extremely valuable.

Mark Wimer: Will is right on here. The elite tight ends (Graham and Gronkowski) deserve first round consideration in this paradigm. Second tier guys like Brandon Pettigrew (83/777/5) and Aaron Hernandez (79/910/7) are worth a look in the late second/early third round. The tight end has arrived as a fantasy force and this is doubly true in leagues where tight ends score 1.5 PPR.