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Evaluating the Fantasy Impact of Quarterbacks and Tight Ends on New Teams in 2017

With NFL free agency in full swing, many teams have dropped players and other teams have added them. Sometimes these old faces in new places result in a positive fantasy (and real-life) impact. Other times, this results in a player who struggles.

 

With the NFL Draft coming at the end of April, fantasy owners are starting to get a little anxious about the upcoming season. While it's too early to really start preparing for the 2017 fantasy season, we can look at the possible fantasy outlook for players that have changed teams. First, the key quarterbacks and tight ends that are on new teams:

 

Quarterbacks

 

Mike Glennon, Chicago Bears

All signs point to Glennon being the starting quarterback for the Chicago Bears. The Bears did also just sign Mark Sanchez, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility that Sanchez gets in a game or two at some point. Glennon hasn't proven himself in the NFL, but the Bears have faith in him. In 2013 for Tampa Bay, he threw for 2,608 yards and 19 touchdowns with nine interceptions.

 

Since then, however, he hasn't been worthy of fantasy consideration. He completed just 10 passes in 2016, and zero in ’15 as Jameis Winston’s backup. It was a gamble for the Bears and it will be a gamble for fantasy owners to invest in Glennon. As for Sanchez, he'll likely play some, but he’s not fantasy relevant at this point.

 

Brian Hoyer, San Francisco 49ers

In 2016, Hoyer filled in for an injured Jay Cutler for Chicago for six games. He actually looked pretty decent in a Bears uniform until his season ended with a broken leg. His final stats from 2016 were 1,445 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions. He's never been a starter for a full season, but it looks like the 49ers will give him that opportunity.

 

He likely won't end up playing all 16 games for the 49ers either, and his backup is Matt Barkley, another former Bear. The 49ers’ wide receivers leave plenty to be desired with Pierre Garcon taking over as the No. 1 target and Marquise Goodwin and Jeremy Kerley lining up behind him. Hoyer will have low QB2 fantasy value.

 

Josh McCown, New York Jets

At the start of the season, McCown will be 38 years old. However, he will likely be the starting quarterback for the Jets. He's played on seven different NFL teams, and he hasn't played in 16 games in a season yet. Last year in Cleveland, he had 1,100 passing yards, six interceptions and six touchdowns in five games.

 

The Jets are going to have to find a better option at QB, but until they do, McCown will be the starter. The offense should get wide receiver Eric Decker back, but it still won't be enough to warrant starting McCown in standard fantasy formats.

 

Tight Ends

 

Julius Thomas, Miami Dolphins

The biggest issue with Thomas has been staying healthy. He's played in the NFL for six seasons and has yet to log a full one. In 2016, he had 30 receptions for 281 yards and four touchdowns in nine games. In his last two seasons in Denver, Thomas had 12 touchdowns in each season. The potential is there; he just needs to stay on the field.

 

In 2017, Thomas will be playing for the Dolphins, who could use a tight end in the red zone. The Dolphins will ask Thomas to block but he should be a factor in the passing game. He can excel, but he does need to stay healthy. Expect Thomas to be a TE2 but he should catch touchdowns.

 

Related: Fantasy Football Tight End Targets - Who Led the Way in 2016?

 

Dwayne Allen, New England Patriots

Allen hasn't had a season where he's been able to break out, and at this point, it may be too late. He had 35 receptions and 406 yards with six touchdowns, in 2016. The most touchdowns he's had in a season is eight (in 2014).

 

With Rob Gronkowski unable to get through a full season, the Patriots needed another tight end that could be a weapon for Tom Brady. Allen may succeed in New England, but there are so many mouths to feed, it's hard to consider him more than a TE2.

 

Martellus Bennett, Green Bay Packers

The Packers haven't had a solid tight end since Jermichael Finley, and Aaron Rodgers could certainly use one. Bennett wasn't utilized as a red zone option much prior to going to New England. He had a career-high seven touchdowns in 2016 and also recorded three 100-yard games.

 

The Packers could use a big tight end in the red zone, and that's the role Bennett will fill. He's 30 years old, but he still can put up enough numbers to have a fantasy impact. He'll be drafted as a low TE1, and he could be a surprise value player this season.

 

— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. She also writes for SoCalledFantasyExperts.com among other sites. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.