No position is more unpredictable in fantasy football than kickers. Year after year after year, no position has a lower correlation between where they're drafted before the season and where they finish after the season. No position has a lower correlation between how they score in one week and how they score in the next. No position has a lower correlation between projected points and actual points.
In addition, placekicker is the position that has the smallest spread between the best players and the middle-of-the-pack players for fantasy. Finally, most fantasy GMs will only carry one kicker at a time, which means there are a dozen or more starting kickers sitting around on waivers at any given time. Given all of this, it rarely makes sense to devote resources to the position. Instead, GMs are best served by rotating through whichever available kicker has the best weekly matchup.
Every week, I'll rank the situations each kicker finds himself in (ignoring the talent of the kicker himself) to help you find perfectly startable production off the waiver wire.
Week 2 Results
Ryan Succop (1 FG attempt, 1 FG, 4 XPs, 7 points)
The Buccaneers haven't yet put everything together enough to become the offensive juggernaut many expected them to be before the season, but their offense was much improved in Week 2 and Succop finished tied for 14th.
Stephen Gostkowski (2 FG attempts, 2 FGs, 3 XPs, 9 points)
Some might have balked at starting Gostkowski a week after he missed three field goals and an extra point, but Rent-a-Kicker doesn't care about past performance. The Titans offense scored plenty of points against the Jaguars and Gostkowski hit his two field-goal attempts from 49 and 51 yards, proving once again that weekly kicker performance is largely just random. He did hit the upright on one extra point attempt, but still, his 9 points this week tied him for 10th at the position.
Cody Parkey (0 FG Attempts, 0 FGs, 5 XPs, 5 Points)
Nobody really saw the Cleveland Browns turning into an unstoppable offensive juggernaut in the red zone, but running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt scored four short touchdowns and the Browns managed to end every promising drive with seven points. Parkey's 5 points tied him for 26th among kickers.
Rodrigo Blankenship (4 FG Attempts, 4 FGs, 2 XP, 14 Points)
An early-season surprise, Blankenship has been the primary beneficiary of a Colts offense that keeps stalling out in field goal range. Through two weeks, Blankenship leads the NFL in field-goal attempts and is tied for first in made field goals, but ranks just 18th in extra points. His 14 points last week ranked 3rd at the position.
Cairo Santos (2 FG Attempts, 1 FG, 2 XPs, 5 Points)
The Chicago Bears might be 2-0, but they'll need their offense to start making plays if they want to keep the winning streak going. Santos' lone miss was a forgivable 50-yarder, but his 5 points still tied him for 26th last week.
Results To Date
To date, Rent-a-Kicker has made 10 weekly recommendations. Those 10 kickers have averaged 7.1 points, compared to last year's 7.65 weekly average. That average would currently rank 17th at the position. Our top weekly recommendation averages 7.5 points, while every highlighted kicker with a great matchup averages 8, which would rank 10th.
The top 12 kickers by preseason ADP were Justin Tucker (23 points), Harrison Butker (19 points), Wil Lutz (16 points), Greg Zuerlein (15 points), Robbie Gould (15 points), Matt Gay (cut before the season), Zane Gonzalez (18 points), Younghoe Koo (22 points), Matt Prater (14 points), Dan Bailey (7 points), Jake Elliott (12 points), and Ka'imi Fairbairn (12 points). Despite the extra draft capital expenditure, only four of these kickers have outperformed the average of our highlighted "Great Plays". Excluding Gay, the remaining kickers average 15.7 points, which trails the average of "Great Plays" that were available on waivers (16 points).
Week 3 Situations
**Since streaming kickers is so popular and rostered players can vary across leagues, here is a list of how favorable every kicker's situation is based on Vegas projected totals and stadium. Quality plays who are on waivers in over 50% of leagues based on NFL.com roster percentages are italicized and will be highlighted in next week's column. Also, note that these rankings are kicker-agnostic; teams will occasionally change kickers mid-week, but any endorsements apply equally to whatever kicker winds up eventually getting the start.**
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