Tyler Higbee Fantasy Outlook: Poised for Another Top-10 TE Season?

Los Angeles Rams TE Tyler Higbee was one of six tight ends to see 6+ targets per game last season. Is he a top-10 fantasy TE again this year?

In 2022, the Los Angeles Rams had to lean heavily on veteran TE Tyler Higbee. Fast forward to 2023 training camp, and WR Cooper Kupp is already dealing with a hamstring injury. Could Higbee be in store for his best season yet? Let’s take a closer look.

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Tyler Higbee’s Fantasy Outlook

What if I told you Tyler Higbee had a career year in 2022 and is being drastically undervalued heading into 2023? Sure, you might call me crazy for saying that, but you shouldn’t ignore some of the signs that point toward Higbee being a reliable fantasy TE option this season.

Higbee posted a career-high 72 receptions and a career-best TE6 fantasy finish with Matthew Stafford, Baker Mayfield, John Walford, and Bryce Perkins starting at least one game at QB for the Rams last year.

Despite all of the instability at the QB position in LA, Higbee managed to see a career-high 108 targets in 2022, which was fourth most amongst tight ends.

Most might assume these career highs from Higbee are a direct result of Kupp sustaining a season-ending injury in Week 10 last year. But did you know that through the first 10 weeks of the season — every game Kupp played in last year — Higbee had four games with 9+ targets?

During that same time span with Kupp, Higbee finished as a top-eight tight end on four occasions. This usage with Kupp in the lineup suggests Higbee was a productive, viable fantasy TE option whether Kupp was playing or not.

Should You Draft Tyler Higbee at His Current Draft Day Price?

For starters, Higbee’s current ADP is in the 11th round as the TE14 off the board, making him a bargain at his current draft-day price.

Whether you believe Kupp being in or out of the lineup benefits Higbee, he’s one of the few proven and reliable pass-catching options currently on the Rams’ roster for Stafford, who targeted him six times per contest through the nine full games they played together last season.

Across the league, there were six tight ends who averaged over six targets per game. They were Travis Kelce, T.J. Hockenson, Mark Andrews, Zach Ertz, Pat Freiermuth, and… Higbee.

MORE: 2023 Fantasy Player Projections

It’s worth noting that Zach Ertz did not finish the season as a top-seven TE due to injury, but even he ranked sixth at the position in points per game in PPR formats.

Now, let’s circle back to Higbee’s current competition for targets heading into 2023.

If you combine the NFL production of the four veteran WRs on the Rams’ roster behind Kupp, which includes Van Jefferson, Tutu Atwell, Lance McCutcheon, and Ben Skowronek, they have a collective NFL stat line of 161 receptions, 2,198 yards, and 11 TDs.

The combined production of those four Rams WRs on the roster collectively have 145 fewer receptions, 909 fewer yards, and nine fewer TDs than Higbee.

Last season, target volume was a clear indicator to fantasy success for tight ends. And there’s a very strong case to be made that Higbee is going to see over 100 targets for a second consecutive year, whether Kupp’s hamstring injury lingers into the season or not.

If that’s the case, then Higbee is currently being drafted way too late and is a big draft-day bargain. He’s a late-round tight end that could pay very big dividends for you during your fantasy drafts at his current price.

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