When the Patriots traded for Martellus Bennett, fantasy football circles were abuzz with possibilities for what it meant for the New England passing game this season. Visions danced in our heads of the old Rob Gronkowksi-Aaron Hernandez tight end sets that gave the NFL fits (which feel so long ago, but this is only the fourth season without Hernandez in the NFL). Then injuries to Rob Gronkowski mounted, and we all grew increasingly excited for the Black Unicorn to get his chance. Now that Gronk is out for the year, is Martellus Bennett worth riding this weekend?[embedit snippet=”jeff-ads”]
For all of the preseason hype around Bennett and continued trust in him, there hasn’t been a three-game span this season where Marty B was a useful fantasy football commodity. His overall numbers are pretty dismal from a scoring perspective (four touchdowns on the year, with three in one game) and from a yardage perspective (three games over 100 yards, but eight under 50, with three of these at ten or fewer). He hasn’t been a reliable fantasy football commodity at all this season, yet he continues to get hype, praise and high rankings. This isn’t all his fault, as he’s battled injuries all year.
Injuries, unfortunately, are one of the reasons why he isn’t a great play this weekend. He sat out practice Wednesday, but was limited Thursday and Friday in practice. While he is questionable for this weekend, he is expected to suit up.
The other reason Bennett is a bad play is the matchup. The Ravens have devoured tight ends this year, allowing the fifth-fewest fantasy points to the position on the season. They’ve yielded two tight end touchdowns all year, and only two games over seven fantasy points (a good number for TE12 on the week). One of those was to Seth DeValve, so only Tyler Eifert’s touchdown and 68 yards was the relevant tight end game against the Ravens.
Bennett at this point is more sizzle than steak, and despite having the TE production to himself in New England, his injuries are hampering him too much to make him useful. Add that to a negative matchup that doesn’t allow touchdowns or yardage to tight ends on the year, and it’s hard to see an avenue where Martellus Bennett is a benefit to your fantasy squad this weekend. His only real hope is that he can come down with a touchdown, but given his injuries, that may be easier said than done.