Zach Ertz remains one of the top tight ends in the NFL and Fantasy, and he should again have a standout season in 2020. He's worth drafting as the No. 3 tight end behind Travis Kelce and George Kittle, and he should be selected no later than Round 4 in all formats. Ertz did struggle slightly in 2019 compared to his record-breaking performance in 2018, and the increased role for Dallas Goedert is part of the reason. But Ertz was still one of just four tight ends to average at least 14.0 PPR points per game - along with Kelce, Kittle and Austin Hooper - and this is the third year in a row Ertz has been above that threshold. While Kelce and Kittle might have distanced themselves from Ertz slightly, he's still one of the best players at his position. And he's worth drafting with an early-round pick in all leagues.
Ertz could be a candidate for a contract extension this summer, Zach Berman of The Athletic reports. The Eagles picked up Ertz's 2021 team option back in March, setting him up for cap hits around $12.5 million the next two seasons. An extension for a 29-year-old tight end wouldn't be without risk, but it likely would increase the team's flexibility in the short term. Ertz should be fine for training camp, as he said in January that it would take him about one month to recover from the cracked rib and lacerated kidney that he played through late last season.
Philadelphia picked up Ertz's (rib/kidney) contract option for 2021 on Friday, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports. The news isn't a major surpise as the 29-year-old is set to earn $8 million and $8.5 million over the next two seasons, but the move officially puts him on the books for 2021. Ertz sustained a cracked rib and lacerated kidney Week 16 and missed the regular-season finale, but he returned to play 61 offensive snaps in the team's wild-card loss to the Seahawks. He finished the season with 88 catches for 916 yards and six touchdowns in 2019, and he'll enter next season as a top target for quarterback Carson Wentz.
Ertz told Les Bowen of The Philadelphia Inquirer on Monday that it'll take some time to get back to 100 percent. "They said it's probably going to take another month to feel back to myself after everything that went on," Ertz added. Ertz was referencing the cracked rib and lacerated kidney that's inhibited him since he picked them up Week 16. The issues combined to keep Ertz sidelined in the regular-season finale, and he wasn't medically cleared to play through the latter concern until Saturday. He proceeded to play 88 percent of the offensive snaps during Sunday's wild-card loss to the Seahawks, gathering in two of four passes for 44 yards in the process. With plenty of time to recover, Ertz no doubt will be healthy by the time the offseason program kicks off in the spring. His future with the Eagles seemingly is in some question, though, as the 29-year-old is due $12.5 million in 2020, and the team has talented second-year TE Dallas Goedert waiting in the wings.
Ertz (ribs) secured two of four targets for 44 yards in the Eagles' 17-9 wild-card loss to the Seahawks on Sunday. Ertz battled back from both ribs and kidney injuries to play in the contest, but he ultimately was only able to make a modest impact. The fact Carson Wentz (concussion) was knocked out of the game early certainly didn't help Ertz's cause, and backup Josh McCown turned much more often to Ertz's position mate Dallas Goedert. Ertz finished the regular season with the second-highest reception (88), receiving yardage (916) and touchdown (six) totals of his career across 15 games, and he'll look to make a similar impact again in 2020 while sharing the position with the emerging Dallas Goedert.
Ertz (ribs) is listed as active Sunday against the Seahawks. In Week 16, Ertz played through a cracked rib and lacerated kidney, which combined to force a hospital visit after the game. Thus, it's no surprise he didn't suit up for Philly's regular-season finale. Per Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Ertz didn't get cleared for contact until Saturday, but his ability to log limited practices all week put him into a position to return. While Ertz will be available to an Eagles offense short of experience in the skill positions, he may be relegated to serve as a decoy for second-year tight end Dallas Goedert, who averaged 7.9 targets per game over the last seven games.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|2||09/20||Los Angeles Rams||20||7.25|
|4||10/05||@San Francisco 49ers||6||5.42|
|7||10/23||New York Giants||25||8.00|
|10||11/15||@New York Giants||25||8.00|
|13||12/06||@Green Bay Packers||14||6.78|
|14||12/13||New Orleans Saints||8||6.12|
|3 Year Avg||134||93||968||7||54||10.41||136|