Fantasy football managers who have had Travis Kelce's help reaching this week's semifinal round have been dealing with plenty of frustration in Week 16. Kelce has spent all week on the COVID list with uncertainty around his status for Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Well on Sunday morning, Adam Schefter confirmed the worst. Kelce will not be activated, and is officially out in Week 16.
This obviously wipes out any potential fantasy value Kelce had for the week. Fantasy football's TE2, with an average of 16.9 PPR fantasy points per game, Kelce's absence will be especially tough on managers who haven't already come up with a contingency plan.
The tight end position has been thin all season, and now finding a replacement for one of your top producers on Sunday morning is not a good spot to be in.
Travis Kelce Replacements
Here are a few names that might be available on your waiver wire that you can start if you're in a pinch now.
Jared Cook is rostered in 59% of Yahoo! fantasy football leagues. He has seen 5-plus targets in four of his last five games and draws a great matchup against the Houston Texans.
Cole Kmet is rostered in only 32% of leagues, and he gets a similarly favorable matchup against the Seattle Seahawks (6th most fantasy points allowed to opposing tight ends). After failing to hit double-digit fantasy points in any of his first eight games of the season, Kmet has done so in three of his last six. His volume has also picked up lately, with 9 targets last week and an average of 8.0 per game over his last four.
If you're in a deeper league or your leaguemates have burned you by adding most of the viable options, James O'Shaughnessy (3% rostered) is also a good Hail Mary option. O'Shaughnessy has averaged a reasonable 5.0 targets per game for the Jacksonville Jaguars since returning in Week 12, and he's played at least 60% of their offensive snaps in all four contests. Now he's up against a New York Jets defense that ranks dead-last in Football Outsiders' pass defense DVOA metric.
SIGN UP AND GET AN INSTANT DEPOSIT BONUS UP TO 500! We'll match 20% of your first deposit on FanDuel Fantasy Sports. Max bonus $500
Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.