The Cincinnati Bengals selected Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert with the 21st overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Fantasy analysis: This is a peculiar and unexpected selection, based on widespread speculation, but the Bengals certainly drafted a quality player. Eifert should allow the Bengals to do an array of things that can help to draw attention away from their outstanding No. 1 receiver, A.J. Green. It's extremely likely that the Bengals will employ a lot of two-tight end sets and split Eifert out wide frequently, like the New England Patriots do often with Aaron Hernandez.
Jermaine Gresham has essentially underachieved, at least in terms of statistical production, since Cincy drafted him in the exact same spot three years ago, but how they've used him is partly to blame. This choice probably kills much of his fantasy value, which gained a little steam in 2012. His team is likely to attempt to take advantage of the dynamic skill sets of its athletes at this position, though, so he shouldn't be written off yet.
Eifert is a very good football player but not necessarily a potential star. Perhaps what the Bengals have in mind could turn him into one, though. Cincinnati's first-round pick may not be worth a lot in fantasy, given the uncertainty about how they'll blend him with their current personnel. But the Notre Dame product should give this offense a lot of versatility, if done correctly, making him a potentially intriguing player and surprising asset for fantasy owners, especially in PPR leagues. It seems likely that he'd be a late-round gamble, barring extreme hype about his work in OTAs, training camp and the exhibition season.
About Nicholas Minnix
Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.
The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.
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