Carson Wentz and Jameis Winston got hooked up this offseason with shiny new toys. Clearly, it hasn't prevented their holdover tight ends, Zach Ertz and Cameron Brate, respectively, from having more fun than ever before.
Ertz, the TE2 overall, had flashed enough star power in his first three years to garner an extension including more than $20 million guaranteed prior to last season. Credit Philadelphia for correctly identifying Ertz hadn't reached his ceiling before doing the deal.
The 26-year-old is on track to smash his previous highs in catches, yards and touchdowns. In fact, with his position-leading 34 catches and 405 yards, Ertz is poised to catch 90 passes for 1,080 yards, plus 10 scores — think Greg Olsen and Travis Kelce with more consistent scoring — and Ertz was drafted in the mid-to-later rounds.
Ertz has put it all together in his fifth season, easily his most consistent to date, and sets his sights next on a Washington secondary he rung up eight catches for 93 yards against in Week 1.
Thanks to O.J. Howard's arrival, Cameron Brate went undrafted in most leagues this summer.
Thanks to his inviting size and knack for the finding pay dirt, Brate on Sunday in Buffalo try and catch a touchdown in his fifth consecutive game and ninth out of 11 dating back to last season.
Brate isn't just a red-zone warrior, either. He's attracted 23 targets in the past three weeks combined and his receptions and yardage have increased in four of five games this season. Brate is taking advantage of playing in between Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson and, in fact, Brate, not Evans, has been Tampa's most consistent fantasy contributor this season.
Whether it's Winston (shoulder, check status) or Ryan Fitzpatrick behind center Sunday against a tough Bills secondary, Brate is locked in as a steady upper-echelon TE1 whose floor is on the rise.
At a position ravaged by injuries and underachievers this season, Ertz and Brate have emerged as beacons of consistency and two of fantasy's better values nearing the season's halfway mark.