The good thing about the bye weeks being spread out this season is that it has been easier to forget about the kicker position. Even though the position is inconsistent and comes with a high degree of variability, often beyond the kicker’s control, it doesn’t mean the position shouldn’t be evaluated each week. Let’s take a look at how they rank for this week:
Justin Tucker – Baltimore Ravens – at New York Jets
Matt Bryant – Atlanta Falcons – vs. San Diego
Stephen Gostkowski – New England Patriots – at Pittsburgh
Cairo Santos – Kansas City Chiefs – vs. New Orleans
Josh Lambo – San Diego Chargers – at Atlanta
Adam Vinatieri – Indianapolis Colts – at Tennessee
Mason Crosby – Green Bay Packers – vs. Chicago
Mike Nugent – Cincinnati Bengals – vs. Cleveland
Dustin Hopkins – Washington Redskins – at Detroit
Brandon McManus – Denver Broncos – vs. Houston
Steven Hauschka – Seattle Seahawks – at Arizona
Will Lutz – New Orleans Saints – at Kansas City
Blair Walsh – Minnesota Vikings – at Philadelphia
Jason Myers – Jacksonville Jaguars – vs. Oakland
Matt Prater – Detroit Lions – vs. Washington
It isn’t a secret that Justin Tucker is one of the league’s top kickers. There is usually at least one week a season that he converts multiple field goals and is the difference maker for fantasy owners. Perhaps we will see that this week against the Jets. Joe Flacco is banged up and questionable to play, which means the Ravens’ offense will likely have some limitations. Tucker is in the unique position of playing in the same stadium, on the road, two weeks in a row. He made all three of his field goal attempts, and two extra points, last week and the Jets defense has not been as strong as expected.
The highest over/under game of the week is the match-up between San Diego and Atlanta, and both kickers are in play. With the game taking place in a dome conditions are ideal, and Matt Bryant is worth a look. As far as opposing kickers go, the Chargers are in the middle of the pack. The veteran is averaging 10 points a week this season, and he has yet to miss a kick; 12 field goals and 21 extra points.
There should not be any surprises that the Saints have allowed the second most points to opposing kickers so far this season. As is the case ever week, Cairo Santos belongs on our radars. After beginning the season by making his first seven field goal attempts, Santos has missed a field goal in each of the past two weeks (while converting two). In between those two games he had his bye week, but that helps to make him an attractive option (owned in just 14.6% of ESPN leagues). It also should be noted that both of his last two games were on the road (in Pittsburgh and Oakland) in less than ideal conditions.