1. Antonio Gates (SD) – He remains the undisputed champion of tight ends, and Gates will be facing the worst pass defense in the NFL this week in Minnesota. He is a must start.
2. Jason Witten (DAL) – Witten has a pretty solid track record against the Eagles, and he is having one of his best seasons to date. Look for another big game in week 9. You should start him with confidence
3. Kellen Winslow (CLE) – He only managed 2 catches last week against St. Louis, but luckily, one of them went for a score. Winslow is too talented and too important to this offense. He should be in your starting line up without question.
4. Tony Gonzalez (KC) – He should be well rested, and poised to do some damage coming off a bye week. Gonzalez remains one of the best fantasy TE’s out there. He has a favorable match up against a Packers team that struggles against tight ends.
5. Chris Cooley (WAS) – He remains one of Jason Campbell’s favorite targets, especially in the red zone. Cooley has 5 TD’s in his last 6 games, and has a very promising match up against a poor Jets defense.
6. Dallas Clark (IND) – Clark has a big challenge ahead of him this week against New England; a team he has struggled against in the past. He is also coming off a tough week 8, where he only had 2 catches. Although the odds seem stacked against him, Clark should be heavily involved in the Colts game plan this week. He remains one of the best TE options out there, and should definitely be in your line up.
7. Heath Miller (PIT) – This week’s match up against the Ravens will be a tough one, but Miller is having a solid season, and has had success against Baltimore in the past. Miller should be your starter on Monday night.
8. Todd Heap (BAL) – He should be in the starting line up this week when the Ravens strap up against Pittsburgh. It is a tough match up, but Heap will be a welcome addition to a Baltimore offense that has struggled to find the end zone of late. He should be targeted often, and barring a setback with his hamstring, Heap should be on your starting roster in week 9. (Check injury report: hamstring)
9. Tony Scheffler (DEN) – Since returning from injury, he has been a top red zone target for Jay Cutler. Scheffler has established himself as a legit scoring threat, and could have a big game against the Lions 30th ranked pass defense.
10. Vernon Davis (SF) – In his second game back from injury, Davis posted his best game of the season last week. As talented as he is, Davis can not be considered a reliable fantasy TE until he can stay healthy, and produce on a consistent basis. He has a favorable week 9 match up against an Atlanta defense that has had trouble containing tight ends this season.
11. Ben Watson (NE) – He returned to practice on Wednesday, and it appears that he will likely play this week against Indianapolis. Watson has been hot and cold this season, but if he is in the starting line up; he should be involved in the Patriots game plan. He is always a candidate for a TD. (Check injury report: ankle)
12. Donald Lee (GB) – He is not one of the elite fantasy TE’s out there, but he does offer consistency, and that is something most TE’s can not offer. Lee is unlikely to provide monster numbers for you this week, but he is a lock to get you something.
13. Owen Daniels (HOU) – If healthy, Daniels makes for a decent option this week against the Raiders. He is yet to produce overwhelming numbers, but he is a capable TE. (Check injury report: ankle)
14. Eric Johnson (NO) – He is one of the more inconsistent TE options out there, but Johnson almost always provides something, and is very capable of a huge game any week.
15. Alge Crumpler (ATL) – He has had a disappointing season to say the least. Crumpler is battling multiple injuries, but says he expects to play in week 9. He has yet to do much in the ’07 season, but we all know what he is capable of. If he plays, Crumpler may be worth a shot in your starting line up against San Francisco. (Check injury report: knee and ankle)
16. Jeff King (CAR) – He is coming off a pretty big game against Indy last week with 10 receptions. King has provided fantasy owners with a couple of solid weeks, but he is very unreliable. He is best used as a bye week fill in against the Titans.
17. Bo Scaife (TEN) – He was starting to show some promise while Kerry Collins was subbing at QB. Now that Vince Young is back at the helm, Scaife is falling back into mediocrity. Scaife is not a TE you can rely on, but he is capable of a big game. This week’s match up against Carolina is promising, but do not expect a lot.
18. Zach Miller (OAK) – Although Miller has expanded his role in the Raiders offense, he has yet to have a truly explosive performance. He has the makings of a star TE for the future, but he is still a little shaky for the near future. Start him at your own risk.
19. Will Heller (SEA) – He had two TD’s in his last game against St. Louis, and could be a sleeper for week 9 against a horrible Cleveland defense. There are no guarantees with this guy, but he could be a great bye week fill in.
20. L.J. Smith (PHI) – Smith has spent much of the ’07 season sidelined with injury, and even when he has played; he has produced very little. The good news is that he appears to be completely healthy, and he has a solid history against the Cowboys. He would be a big gamble for your starting line up, but it could pay off.
* Other considerable TE options for week 9 include: Leonard Pope (ARI), Visanthe Shiancoe (MIN), Chris Baker (NYJ), Marcedes Lewis (JAC), and Alex Smith (TB) if healthy