Detroit Lions tight ends, H-backs
“Hock” as he is often called is looking to continue the explosion by second-year tight ends and to move up the Detroit Lions receiver pecking order in targets. This offseason he trained with All-Pro George Kittle with the hope that he stays on the field for more games and his body is more prepared for the rigors of the NFL.
Hockenson is talented and capable of being a 700 to 800-yards receiving player during any campaign if he can avoid future troubles like the concussion that sidelined him in 2019.
His 32 receptions for 367 yards and 2 touchdowns was a let down for many fans but not entirely unpredictable for a rookie. The expectations are absolutely through the roof for him to prove that Quinn didn’t make a mistake by drafting him in round one last year, especially given that his arrival was on the heels of former first-round tight end Eric Ebron’s departure.
Putting that in the past, the Lions need him to take a big step forward for the offense to really threaten every level of opposition defenses.
As a Kittle clone, look to draft Hock just outside of the TE1 players, the top-12 at the position. He is on average pick 133 or approximately a round-thirteen selection.
He is listed as the thirteenth tight end in ESPN rankings and the123rd ranked fantasy prospect but due to his upside and status as the No. 3 option in the passing attack he could easily outperform that draft position. Consider him a low-end TE1 or an ideal TE2 with a huge upside.
Jesse James has an infamous, albeit great football name, a big contract, and some value if Hockenson were to get injured again. It would be a situation to monitor considering that Logan Thomas, the third-string tight end, outperformed James when Hockenson was hurt last year. James has never surpassed 423 yards receiving or 3 touchdowns in his five-year career.
Skip on James as a replacement unless he starts getting red-zone looks from Stafford AND Hockenson is out. There are almost assuredly better fantasy options on the wire.
Other tight ends, H-backs, or fullbacks
Isaac Nauta, Nick Bawden, and Hunter Bryant are names-to-know but to file away until they produce something significant. If one starts getting all of Hockenson’s targets, pick him up; if not, leave these guys alone.