How much time should you spend thinking about kicker this fantasy football season?
You’ve already spent too much time in the split second it took to answer that question.
Season-long draft strategies
Your kicker list should include kickers on teams that are expected to score a lot of points, listed from most points to least points. Sure it’s nice to get a kicker with a long leg or one who is super consistent, but it’s definitely not worth paying extra for them.
Using three-year averages, the difference between the No. 1 kicker and the last starting kicker in a 12-team league is 30 points, less than two points per week. Yes, two points can win and lose games for you, but you want those edges to come at running back or wide receiver.
The problem with kickers is that we always crown a new top-10 kicker or five every season. It’s considerably more cost effective to pick the best kicker available to you in the last round and stream kickers with the best matchups that week than it is to waste an 11th-round pick on Stephen Gostkowski.
That’s his ADP this season. You know who was drafted in the 11th round last season? Ben Roethlisberger and Jordan Mathews. Justin Forsett and Odell Beckham Jr. weren’t even drafted last season.
Save the kicker for last.
Daily fantasy football strategies
Draft Kings did away with kickers last season, replacing them with a third wide receiver. That was cool. More of the same this season too.
You still have to pick a kicker at FanDuel, so let’s discuss.
The only time you want to pay up for a kicker is when you have the absolute best lineup and you have a bunch of money left over. Seriously, though, is that your best lineup? That money could be better spent at another position.
There are almost always kickers in the lower-middle to low-range with an excellent matchup. Pick them almost every week.
Top 35 kickers for 2015
These rankings may seem a bit off to you. Here’s the methodology: We took three-year fantasy point season averages (fpts) and assigned them to players based on the free fantasy football rankings at Fantasy Pros. The ADP is by position from Fantasy Pros, to give you an idea where these players are being drafted compared to their peers. Then we modified the points (xfpts) using a formula that factors in age-based performances and projected schedule based on defense-adjusted value over average.
There are no ages listed for the kickers because it doesn’t matter. Kickers can perform well long after their colleagues at other positions. The only modification made here was on schedule. In mocks I’ve ended up with Cody Parkey, Matt Bryant and Blair Walsh an awful lot, but when I have to pick one in a real draft I’ll just take the top guy left on this list. Or the autodraft list, then look for superperforming kickers early and/or kickers with nice matchups.
|1||Stephen Gostkowski NE, 4||K||179.0||1||181.5|
|2||Justin Tucker BAL, 9||K||164.5||6||164.5|
|3||Adam Vinatieri IND, 10||K||164.5||2||162.0|
|4||Connor Barth DEN, 7||K||162.7||7||152.7|
|5||Dan Bailey DAL, 6||K||162.5||4||157.5|
|6||Steven Hauschka SEA, 9||K||160.5||5||170.5|
|7||Cody Parkey PHI, 8||K||159.8||8||154.8|
|8||Matt Bryant ATL, 10||K||154.9||9||149.9|
|9||Mason Crosby GB, 7||K||154.6||3||159.6|
|10||Blair Walsh MIN, 5||K||145.0||12||147.5|
|11||Nick Novak SD, 10||K||144.9||17||144.9|
|12||Matt Prater DET, 9||K||143.1||10||140.6|
|13||Dan Carpenter BUF, 8||K||138.1||11||135.6|
|14||Caleb Sturgis MIA, 5||K||136.1||19||138.6|
|15||Graham Gano CAR, 5||K||129.4||18||116.9|
|16||Randy Bullock HOU, 9||K||127.3||15||119.8|
|17||Josh Brown NYG, 11||K||126.0||25||121.0|
|18||Phil Dawson SF, 10||K||125.7||14||133.2|
|19||Dustin Hopkins NO, 11||K||125.6||27||123.1|
|20||Chandler Catanzaro ARI, 9||K||122.8||16||130.3|
|21||Patrick Murray TB, 6||K||117.0||102.0|
|22||Garrett Hartley PIT, 11||K||114.3||24||124.3|
|23||Robbie Gould CHI, 7||K||114.2||21||121.7|
|24||Greg Zuerlein STL, 6||K||114.1||20||126.6|
|25||S. Janikowski OAK, 6||K||112.1||13||109.6|
|26||Shayne Graham FA||K||110.6||110.6|
|27||Nick Folk NYJ, 5||K||106.0||22||106.0|
|28||Mike Nugent CIN, 7||K||105.3||26||112.8|
|29||Kai Forbath WAS, 8||K||104.6||28||99.6|
|30||Cairo Santos KC, 9||K||103.0||23||103.0|
|31||Zach Hocker NO, 11||K||102.1||99.6|
|32||Josh Scobee JAC, 8||K||102.1||99.6|
|33||Ryan Succop TEN, 4||K||101.4||101.4|
|34||Jay Feely FA||K||99.6||99.6|
|35||Travis Coons CLE, 11||K||97.1||99.6|
|36||Carey Spear CLE, 11||K||97.1||99.6|
Draft well, and may variance be in your favor today and every day.