Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Fantasy Focus: Cameron Brate

Brate looks to build off his eight touchdown receptions in 2016.

Photos from Cameron Brate's 2016 campaign.

The Buccaneers are in an interesting situation, from a fantasy football perspective, because they have two tight ends who would both seem to be the top target at their position.

Based on the numbers alone, Brate was one of the top tight ends in the NFL last year. He caught eight touchdowns, which were tied for the most of any player at his position. Brate was the No. 7 tight end in the league in terms of fantasy points, earning 171, according to ESPN.

So he should be one of the top available tight ends this year, right? He's young, coming off of his first year as a full-time starter and has been one of Jameis Winston's favorite red zone targets during training camp. ESPN thinks otherwise. They have Brate projected as the No. 17 tight end in the league, even behind Howard, who is ranked fourteenth.

Average Draft Position (ESPN): 138
Position (TE) Draft Ranking: 17
2016 Fantasy Point Production (Standard Format): 171
2016 Position (TE) Rank: 7

The conventional way of thinking would be to assume that Brate will be less productive this year because Howard will be commanding some of the targets that would have otherwise been aimed at Brate. But from what we've seen during the spring, that may not be true. The Buccaneers have been finding ways to get both Brate and Howard on the field, particularly in the red zone.

During OTAs and mini-camp, the Bucs utilized formations where both Howard and Brate were in the lineup, along with Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson. In that formation, three of the Bucs' four pass-catchers are 6-foot-4 or taller. Howard has been impressive, but Brate's chemistry with Jameis Winston is evident. If Winston wasn't looking at Evans, there's a good chance he had his eyes on Brate.

Howard is the stronger blocker of the bunch, so it wouldn't be surprising to see Brate catch more touchdown passes this year.

The Buccaneers are in an interesting situation, from a fantasy football perspective, because they have two tight ends who would both seem to be the top target at their position.

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