Fantasy Football Kicker Guide Week 8 (2020)
Jim Bakken set the NFL record for most field-goal attempts in a game as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals in 1967. Bakken made seven of nine field goals in the game, as the Cardinals beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 28-14 at Pitt Stadium.
Rookie Tyler Bass came within one attempt of the record with eight field-goal tries in Sunday’s 18-10 win over the New York Jets. In what turned out to be one of the ugliest games of the year, Josh Allen and the Bills offense struggled to score touchdowns against Gregg Williams’ defense.
The 4% of managers who started Bass in Yahoo leagues were treated to six made field goals for 20 fantasy points. The performance would have been even more impressive had Bass not shanked two kicks, including a very makable 37-yard attempt in with 12:23 left in the fourth quarter.
I would not be surprised to see fantasy owners chase Bass’ performance by adding him off waivers. Before you submit that claim, keep in mind that prior to Sunday, Bass had yet to top double digits in any fantasy game.
For the first time this season, weather could have a significant impact on the kicking performance for multiple players, as only one game scheduled this week is in a dome, and eight kickers will deal with rain and blustery wind conditions. Keep an eye on weather reports on Sunday and adjust accordingly if you feel that your kicker is going to be adversely affected by rain and wind.
Week 7 Stud Performances from widely available kickers
Jason Myers (SEA) at Arizona: 21% rostership on Yahoo
Myers is the perfect example of a kicker who, despite playing on one of the best offenses in the league, does not put up monster fantasy points because his offense is too effective in the red zone. Not only is Russell Wilson on pace to tie Peyton Manning’s passing touchdown record, but he is also the most efficient red zone passer in the league. Myers will give you a solid floor of extra points, but he will only come through with a big game when the Seahawks play an above-average red zone defense or if the game script presents a high scoring game. That is what happened this week with Seattle losing to Arizona in a 37-34 shootout, leaving Myers with 12 fantasy points.
Tyler Bass (BUF) at NY Jets: 4% rostership on Yahoo
Bass led all players with 20 fantasy points against the Jets on Sunday. It was an impressive performance for the rookie from Georgia Southern University, but it’s not something I would chase on the waiver wire unless we continue to see the Bills offense struggle in the red zone.
Week 7 Dud Performances from widely-owned kickers
Younghoe Koo (ATL) vs. Detroit: 89% rostership on Yahoo
Koo finished with his worst game of the season as the Falcons surprisingly failed to do much at home against a Lions defense that had been torched by multiple opponents this season. Koo made both extra-point attempts, but the Falcons were unable to give Koo a field goal opportunity. Koo should bounce back with a big game this week against the Panthers, although the weather in Charlotte could be an issue for both kickers.
Greg Zuerlein (DAL) at Washington: 88% rostership on Yahoo
Greg the Leg scored four fantasy points in Dallas’ 25-3 beatdown at the hands of the Washington Football team. Zuerlein now has five or fewer points in four of his seven games and does not look to improve any time soon based on his next two matchups against the Eagles and Steelers. If you are still holding on hope for Zuerlein, it might be time to abandon ship and pick up Rodrigo Blankenship from the waiver wire.
|Rank||ECR||Name||Team||Opponent||Spread||O/U||OPP RZ D||RZ EFF*||OFF RNK||K Score**||Weather|
|1||1||Harrison Butker||KC||vs. NYJ||-21||52||5||22||7||34||44F, 7 mph wind|
|2||3||Justin Tucker||BAL||vs. PIT||-6.5||49||21||19||27||67||57F, 10 mph wind|
|3||4||Matt Prater||DET||vs. IND||3||52||20||14||23||57||Dome|
|4||9||Wil Lutz||NO||at CHI||-3||47||1||23||11||35||41F, 15 mph wind|
|5||2||Rodrigo Blankenship||IND||at DET||-3||52||22||6||19||47||Dome|
|6||5||Mason Crosby||GB||vs. MIN||-6.5||56||6||25||8||39||37F, 20 mph wind|
|7||6||Younghoe Koo||ATL||at CAR||2.5||51||18||9||6||33||55F, rain, 13 mph wind|
|8||7||Joey Slye||CAR||vs. ATL||-2.5||51||28||5||16||49||55F, rain, 13 mph wind|
|9||8||Jake Elliott||PHI||vs. DAL||-3||44||16||11||25||52||52F, light rain, 14 mph wind|
|10||13||Jason Myers||SEA||vs. SF||-6.5||54||3||31||1||35||55F, 3 mph wind|
|11||16||Brandon McManus||DEN||vs. LAC||3||45||8||2||28||38||61F, light wind|
|12||10||Ryan Succop||TB||at NYG||-8.5||48||9||28||15||52||TBD|
|13||23||Michael Badgley||LAC||at DEN||-3||45||4||13||4||21||61F, light wind|
|14||11||Stephen Gostkowski||TEN||at CIN||-3.5||56||26||30||5||61||45F, 12 mph wind|
|15||12||Tyler Bass||BUF||vs. NE||-3||46||12||10||13||35||42f, light rain 13 mph wind|
|16||14||Daniel Carlson||LV||at CLE||-3.5||56||17||20||9||46||44F, light rain,22 mph wind|
|17||15||Robbie Gould||SF||at SEA||6.5||54||15||24||12||51||55F, 3 mph wind|
|18||17||Randy Bullock||CIN||vs. TEN||3.5||56||31||4||20||55||41F, 15 mph wind|
|19||18||Sam Sloman||LAR||at MIA||-3.5||49||27||18||10||55||83F, 8 mph wind|
|20||20||Dan Bailey||MIN||at GB||6.5||56||24||26||14||64||37F, 20 mph wind|
|21||21||Jason Sanders||MIA||vs. LAR||3.5||49||10||8||22||40||83F, 8 mph wind|
|22||22||Chris Boswell||PIT||at BAL||6.5||49||30||17||21||68||57F, 10 mph wind|
|23||24||Graham Gano||NYG||vs. TB||8.5||48||11||1||31||43||TBD|
|24||25||Greg Zuerlein||DAL||at PHI||-3||44||29||12||3||44||52F, light rain, 14 mph wind|
|25||26||Cairo Santos||CHI||vs. NO||3||47||32||3||29||64||41F, 15 mph wind|
|26||19||Cody Parkey||CLE||vs. LV||-3.5||56||25||29||18||72||44F, light rain, 22 mph wind|
|27||27||Nick Folk||NE||at BUF||3||46||19||7||24||50||42f, light rain 13 mph wind|
|28||28||Sergio Castillo||NYJ||at KC||21||52||23||0||32||55||44F, 7 mph wind|
*Red Zone Efficiency is based on the inverse of how well the kicker’s offense does in the red zone. For example, the Packers rank 7th in red zone efficiency; therefore Mason Crosby has a RZ EFF score of 25. The lower number, the better for kickers, as playing on a team that struggles to score touchdowns in the red zone equates to more field goal opportunities.
**The K Score is the sum of a player’s opponent red zone, the red zone efficiency of his offense, and the overall rank of his respective team in terms of total yards. A low score indicates that a kicker has variables working in his favor for a good fantasy kicking performance.
Kicker rankings are based on numerous factors, including matchups, Vegas lines and score projections, weather conditions, the ability of a kicker’s team offense and their ability to move the ball into field goal range, offensive red zone efficiency, and how well the opposing defense limits touchdowns in the red zone. These factors are a guide, but not a definitive way to predict kicking success, as other variables and negative game scripts significantly impact the outcome.
Based on all of the variables mentioned above, the following two kickers are players ranked outside of the FantasyPros ECR top 10 who could be an excellent play Week 8.
Jason Myers (SEA) vs. San Francisco: 21% rostership on Yahoo
Myers will always give you a decent floor of extra points based on how well the Seattle offense moves the ball and scores touchdowns. When he plays against solid defenses like the 49ers, he will also add a nice bonus of multiple field goals. His K Score of 35 indicates that he should produce a top-10 performance this week against a 49ers defense that just shut down the Rams and the Patriots.
Brandon McManus (DEN) vs. LA Chargers: 28% rostership on Yahoo
Myers is the safer of the two plays this week. If you’re looking for a player who could provide a monster game (but one who also risks goosing you), McManus at home against the Chargers is your play. Last week’s weather and game script against the Chiefs left him with only four fantasy points, but the forecast is much better in Denver this week, and the Chargers will not likely present the same lopsided game script as last week.
Each week I suggest two kickers ranked outside the FantasyPros ECR top 10 who I believe will be solid performers based on the variables described in the K Score section. The following is a review of my picks from the previous week to see where I was successful and where I missed the mark.
Zane Gonzalez (ARI) vs. Seattle: 71% rostership on Yahoo
ECR Rank: 12
My Rank: 6
Week 2 Finish: T2
Gonzalez proved to be my best pick of the year after he scored 15 fantasy points to finish tied for second on the week with Matt Prater. The shootout against the Seahawks gave Gonzo a nice floor of extra points, and Gonzo also made all three of his field-goal attempts.
Randy Bullock (CIN) at Cleveland: 4% rostership on Yahoo
ECR Rank: 16
My Rank: 10
Week 7 Finish: 7
Bullock continues to put up monster games while consistently getting ranked outside the top-12 in ECR. The veteran has scored at least seven fantasy points in six of his seven games, including 10 points in this matchup against Cleveland. I am not as high on Bullock this week against the Titans, and he is on a bye in Week 9, but he should be a solid play starting in Week 10 and for the remainder of the season.
Rodrigo Blankenship (IND) vs. DET: 31% rostership on Yahoo
Hot Rod is the post-waiver drop kicker to add in all formats. He has four games of 11 or more fantasy points in four of his six games and has a floor of six fantasy points in his worst game of the year. I have him as a top-five play this week and a solid waiver claim.
Other player to consider: Jason Myers (SEA) vs. San Francisco: 21% rostership on Yahoo
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