Let’s face it, the kicker position in fantasy football is frustrating and becoming less prominent. However, for many of us rostering a kicker remains a necessary evil. It is for that reason that I am bringing back the Streaming Kicker series this season. You have enough on your plate with waiver claims, setting lineups, and talking smack to your rivals – let me take care of the kicker work.
Extra Roster Spots
In all seriousness, streaming kickers provides you with an advantage in season-long leagues: it provides you with an additional roster spot every week. I’m finishing up my final draft as I write this. With my final pick I am forgoing a K and selecting yet another wide receiver. This gives me one more bite at the apple to find a potential diamond in the rough. I often select one IR-eligible player so that I can move them off my active roster and select my K after waivers but before kick-off. The same rings true for in-season moves. Dropping your K when you make a waiver claim allows you to maximize your options for skill position players throughout the week. This buys you more time as you await injury reports and go to set your lineups.
Drafting Kickers is a Crapshoot
There is very little rhyme or reason to drafting a kicker for a season’s worth of production. The evidence shows that kicker ADP and total points scored is unrelated. Jake Ciely’s petition to ban kickers from fantasy leagues makes this point superbly. Do not spend draft capital on a kicker! Instead stream the position, because while season-long production is impossible to predict, week to week production is easier to spot.
How to Stream Kickers
Look, at this point you know I will do the work for you, but for the sake of transparency and education here is how you can find your weekly advantage. The formula for success is simple – find teams with high Vegas point totals, high passing yardage offenses, and if possible combine that with teams that have poor red-zone touchdown rates. Voila, it is that simple. For a tie-breaker use the individual kicker’s accuracy rates, but a kicker’s skill level is typically less predictive than the other measures when looking at fantasy points scored. As the season progresses more information will be available, such as coaches fourth down tendencies, which we can add to our formula.
Every week I will recommend four kickers with sub 50% ESPN ownership. I will provide the rationale for each selection using the above criteria and other useful RotoViz tools, such as the Strength of Schedule Streaming app and the NFL Stat Explorer app. For example, we want to know Vegas point totals and passing offense, we can use the tools to find teams with better-than-usual matchups that week.
QB Matchups – Week 1