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Trey McBride Thriving in Absence of Zach Ertz

Despite substantial turnover at the most important position on offense in Arizona this season and a routine struggle on a weekly basis to put up points on offense, Cardinals TE Trey McBride has defied his circumstances this season since being named the full-time starter with Zach Ertz going down with injury. Since Week 8, McBride has established himself as not only one of the top target earners on his team, but also as one of the top target earners at the tight end position – and league-wide, for that matter.

Over the past 5 weeks, Trey McBride stacks up very well to the league’s foremost target earners

Over the past five weeks, Trey McBride has earned the 9th-highest target share of any pass catcher in the NFL. This includes all wide receivers and tight ends in that span, and the numbers are even more impressive exclusively among tight ends: he’s behind just T.J. Hockenson in terms of target share since Week 8, and his 14.8 PPR fantasy points per game ranks third behind only Hockenson and George Kittle. Those number are ahead of both Travis Kelce and Sam LaPorta since Week 8, but what’s even more impressive is how McBride has earned his targets.

Since Week 8, the Cardinals have started 3 different quarterbacks (Josh Dobbs, Clayton Tune, and Kyler Murray). In that same stretch of games, they’ve gone 1-4 and averaged just 15.8 points per game as a team. Despite the lack of continuity at quarterback and being part of an objectively bad offense, McBride has posted weekly target shares of 40%, 28%, 30%, 25%, and 20% and is the TE3 in fantasy points per game in that same time frame. He’s emerged as a top fantasy tight end in the middle of the 2023 season, and he should continue to produce at this elite clip given his current status as the de facto No. 1 target in Arizona. While Marquise Brown did see an uptick in his target after two very quiet outings in Kyler Murray’s first two games, it seems like McBride is here to stay as a weapon in Arizona’s passing offense.


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