NFL fans watching Indianapolis’ upset win over the Ravens in Baltimore on Sunday witnessed a record-breaking day and arguably one of the most clutch-kicking performances in NFL history. Ravens fans have become accustomed to amazing kicking displays at M&T Bank Stadium, with future hall-of-fame kicker Justin Tucker nailing clutch kick after clutch kicks over the years.
But Sunday was not Tucker’s day to shine, it was journeyman kicker Matt Gay who stole the show and secured an impressive win for Indy. Gay became the first player in NFL history to connect on four field goals of over 50 yards in one game, including the 54-yarder in overtime to seal the victory.
Rookie kicker Brandon Aubrey made history of his own on Sunday, making him one of the only bright spots in an otherwise disappointing day for Dallas in their 28-16 loss to the Cardinals. Aubrey is the first kicker in the Super Bowl era to attempt and make ten field goals in his first three career games.
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Fantasy Football Week 3 Kicker Rankings & Waiver Wire Advice (2023)
(Rostership percentages courtesy of Yahoo!)
Here are a few Week 3 strong performances from widely-available kickers
Jason Myers (SEA) vs. Carolina: 43% roster percentage on Yahoo
After two pedestrian six-point weeks to start the season, Myers bounced back with 18 points on Sunday. He made all five attempts on the day and a pair of extra points to finish second behind Matt Gay. Myers finished as the top kicker last season and should be a tio-10 kicker this year as well.
Chris Boswell (PIT) @ Las Vegas: 12% roster percentage on Yahoo
If you take out his week one performance in the lopsided loss to the 49ers, Chris Boswell‘s 13 points per game would make him a top-5 kicker. It is too early to predict if that success will continue all season, but I do like his matchup this week against a Houston Texans defense that is playing well under first-year head coach Demeco Ryans.
Week 3 Dud Performances from heavily-owned kickers
Daniel Carlson (LV) vs. Pittsburgh: 86% roster percentage on Yahoo
The red alert is sounding for Carlson after a third-consecutive dud performance to start the season. He has just 14 points all year, and ranks 26th in field goal attempts. If you have the chance to pivot from Carlson to Myers or Aubrey, I would make that change.
|Rank||ECR||Name||TEAM||Opponent||Spread||O/U||OPP RZ D||RZ EFF*||OFF RNK||K Score**||Weather|
|1||2||Jake Elliott||PHI||vs. WAS||44.5||-8.0||8||7||6||21||70F, 11 MPH Wind|
|2||1||Jake Moody||SF||vs. ARI||44||-14.0||14||12||4||30||70F, 9 MPH Wind|
|3||4||Brandon Aubrey||DAL||vs. NE||-7||43.0||22||5||11||38||Dome|
|4||10||Jason Sanders||MIA||at BUF||54||3.0||2||31||1||34||72F, 7 MPH Wind|
|5||6||Harrison Butker||KC||at NYJ||41.5||-9.5||5||29||5||39||67F, 7 MPH Wind|
|6||7||Justin Tucker||BAL||at CLE||40||2.5||1||27||12||40||73F, 8 MPH Wind|
|7||3||Tyler Bass||BUF||vs. MIA||54||-3.0||21||21||7||49||72F, 7 MPH Wind|
|8||5||Cameron Dicker||LAC||vs. LV||47.5||-6.0||27||25||2||54||Dome|
|9||12||Brandon McManus||JAC||vs. ATL||43||-3.0||11||11||16||38||66F, 10 MPH Wind|
|10||22||Chase McLaughlin||TB||at NO||39.5||3.5||3||2||25||30||Dome|
|11||16||Greg Joseph||MIN||at CAR||45||-3.5||18||11||3||32||74F, 13 MPH Wind|
|12||9||Younghoe Koo||ATL||at JAC||43||3.0||10||14||26||50||66F, 10 MPH Wind|
|13||11||Brett Maher||LAR||at IND||45.5||1.5||22||19||9||50||Dome|
|14||13||Matt Gay||IND||vs. LAR||45.5||-1.5||19||25||19||63||Dome|
|15||17||Riley Patterson||DET||at GB||46||-1.5||11||14||8||33||63F, 8 MPH Wind|
|16||8||Jason Myers||SEA||at NYG||46||1.5||17||21||17||55||70F, 9 MPH Wind|
|17||14||Daniel Carlson||LV||at LAC||47.5||6.0||15||11||24||50||Dome|
|18||15||Evan McPherson||CIN||at TEN||41.5||-2.5||13||19||30||62||80F, 7 MPH Wind|
|19||18||Dustin Hopkins||CLE||vs. BAL||40||-2.5||5||29||10||44||73F, 8 MPH Wind|
|20||25||Ka’imi Fairbairn||HOU||vs. PIT||42||3.0||19||0||14||33||Dome|
|21||19||Blake Grupe||NO||vs. TB||39.5||-3.5||3||5||20||28||Dome|
|22||27||Nick Folk||TEN||vs. CIN||41.5||2.5||16||1||31||48||80F, 7 MPH Wind|
|23||20||Graham Gano||NYG||vs. SEA||46||-1.5||32||22||28||82||70F, 8 MPH Wind|
|24||21||Wil Lutz||DEN||at CHI||46||-3.5||29||7||15||51||72F, 6 MPH Wind|
|25||23||Anders Carlson||GB||vs. DET||46||1.5||22||30||22||74||63F, 8 MPH Wind|
|26||24||Chris Boswell||PIT||at HOU||42||-3.0||27||25||27||79||Dome|
|27||26||Eddy Pineiro||CAR||vs. MIN||45||3.5||29||16||21||66||74F, 13 MPH Wind|
|28||28||Cairo Santos||CHI||vs. DEN||46||3.5||31||19||29||79||72F, 6 MPH Wind|
|29||29||Joey Slye||WAS||at PHI||44.5||8.0||26||11||23||60||70F, 11 MPH Wind|
|30||30||Matt Prater||ARI||at SF||44||14.0||22||16||18||56||70F, 9 MPH Wind|
|31||31||Chad Ryland||NE||at DAL||43||7.0||8||26||13||47||Dome|
|32||32||Greg Zuerlein||NYJ||vs. KC||41.5||9.5||5||5||32||42||67F, 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 Ravens rank 4th in red zone efficiency; therefore Justin Tucker has a RZ EFF score of 28. 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.
Contrarian Kicker Plays
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 in Week 4.
Greg Joseph (MIN) @ Carolina: 12% roster percentage on Yahoo
Negative game scripts have limited Joseph to just a pair of field goals and nine extra points in three games. This is a must-win game for the Vikings and the Panthers present a viable match up for a floor of seven points and a ceiling of 13.
Brandon McManus (JAC) @ Atlanta: 33% roster percentage on Yahoo
The Jags have been one of the early disappointments this season, and McManus is no exception. He missed a 40-yard try against the Texans and had another long attempt blocked as a result of suspect effort on the Jacksonville special teams line. I anticipate that both teams will struggle offensively in this game, and McManus will bound back with a top-12 performance as dictated by his 38 K Score.
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.
Riley Patterson (DET) vs. ATL: 43% roster percentage on Yahoo
- ECR Rank: 11
- My Rank: 8
- Week 3 Finish: 14
Nine fantasy points would typically place Patterson inside the top 12 at the position, but not this week with twelve players topping double-figures. As the Detroit offense starts to gel I like Patterson to develop a strong floor of extra points, and he is three for three on the season. He is not a top 10 kicker for me the rest of the season, but he is one to stream based on match ups and, I like that he plays half his games indoors.
Blake Grupe (NO) @ Green Bay: 1% roster percentage on Yahoo
- ECR Rank: 23
- My Rank: 10
- Week 3 Finish: Kicker Tied 26
Grupe was one shanked game-winning field goal try away from finishing with nine fantasy points and a top-15 finish. Instead, his four fantasy points placed him squarely in the bust category.
Waiver Wired: Top Add
Jake Moody (SF) vs. ARZ: 57% roster percentage on Yahoo
For as good as the 49ers have been on offense, they have not faired great in the red zone this season and Moody has been the beneficiary. Add in the fact that the 49ers defense will likely keep the team in games by avoiding negative game scripts for Moody, and you have the recipe for a top-5 kicker.
Other players to consider:
- Brandon Aubrey (DAL) vs. NE: 54% roster percentage on Yahoo
- Cameron Dicker (LAC) vs. NYJ: 65% roster percentage on Yahoo