This is the second article in a series we are referring to as, “Deep Impact” where we at Razzball examine players who are tucked away deep in the player projections and are bound to surpass their underwhelming expectations. The benefit of these players, aside from showing off your fantasy football prowess, is that they are often available on your fantasy league waiver wire and can often provide relief to fantasy owners looking for quality talent in deeper formats.
This article will analyze the fantasy value of Indianapolis Colts third-year tight end Dwayne Allen. The former University of Clemson product was actually drafted in 2012, along with franchise quarterback Andrew Luck and fellow tight end Coby Fleener. He was expected to become a key contributor in the Colts rebuilding offense, and while he played well his rookie season (45 receptions for 521 yards and 3 TD’s), he managed to fly under the radar.
The likely answer for remaining mostly unknown is that Fleener was rated higher than Allen prior to the 2012 NFL Draft. Plus, he was Luck’s former teammate at Stanford. Therefore, it was natural for Colts fans to overlook the less heralded Allen.
However, upon closer examination, many analysts have come to an entirely different conclusion regarding the Colts tight end position. While Fleener essentially plays like a big-bodied receiver, spending the majority of his time split out wide or in the slot, Allen has assumed a more traditional in-line tight end role where he is capable of helping not only in the passing game but also the run game. It is this versatility that makes Allen a valuable commodity for offensive coordinators looking for balance in their offense.
Now, that may sound like a lot of technical jargon for fantasy football analysis, but there is a valid point here. Similar to the New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, Dwayne Allen possesses the ability to deceive defenses and pose as a blocker before releasing from the line as a receiver. Plus, his size makes him an absolute mismatch for most safeties and defensive backs.
This is an especially helpful tool when trying to create quick windows in the red zone. The fact of the matter is, Allen could easily have a Gronkowski-like upside for the Colts offense if he can stay healthy this year. That of course will be the question in the end, as Allen is coming off of a season-ending hip injury just 32 snaps into his sophomore season. However, with the ample amount of recovery time, and the fact he has already been cleared and participated in a preseason game for Indianapolis, there should be nothing to fear.
While nobody can blame fantasy football owners for being wary of the third-year tight end, he could be a tremendous value on your league’s waiver wire if you are looking for a TE2 with upside or simply a player to take a chance on. After all, Allen is owned in only 7% of Yahoo leagues while being the 1,837 overall projected player. His value increases slightly in PPR formats or touchdown heavy leagues as well.