This week saw the sad ending of Stephen Gostkowski’s season with hip surgery. Should you be looking at his replacement for Week 5? I will be going over the kickers that you should be starting this week and those that should be avoided as we look ahead into Week 5 matchups.
Ty Long, Los Angeles Chargers
Opponent: Denver Broncos
Despite Ty Long not being an actual placekicker, he has been quite the kicker. Last week he knocked down all 3 of his attempts with a long coming from 51 yards. This added to 3 extra points. The Broncos have averaged the most field goals against them per game at 2.8. The Chargers should be putting up a lot of points against the Broncos this week which means a lot of points for Long as well.
Opponent: Houston Texans
The Falcons struggled last game to put up points but they are a team that can score a ton on any given game. They have the tools to do so and this week has promise. The Texans have also given up 2.8 field goals on average to opposing teams which is the highest average this season. With weapons like Julio Jones, Devonta Freeman, and Calvin Ridley, I see Matt Bryant being busy this week against the Texans.
Opponent: Carolina Panthers
Josh Lambo is coming off a 4 field goal performance, converting on every attempt. I would expect a similar kind of outing this week against the Panthers who have also allowed 2.8 field goal attempts per game. The Panthers have been a very good defense for preventing touchdowns which can be a good thing for owners of the kickers since they will have more field goal opportunities for more points.
Opponent: New Orleans Saints
Matt Gay showed off his leg last week, sending a kick from 58 yards out through the uprights. He converted both of his 2 field goal attempts into points as well as making all 7 of his extra-point attempts which is no easy task anymore since they moved back the line. Jamies Winston has looked better every game for the Buccaneers which is a good sign for Gay who will get more and more field goal opportunities.
Opponent: Jacksonville Jaguars
Joey Slye has secretly been one of the top kickers in fantasy this year. Last week he had 3 field goals with his long coming from over 50 yards. In fact, he has hit a league-high 4 field goals from 50+ with only missing once which is his only miss on the season. He has been a reliable source of points every week. The Jaguars will be a tougher game, but the Panthers have figured out how to get in field goal position many times regardless.
Opponent: New England Patriots
This is nothing against Hopkins, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he puts up a donut this week. The Redskins’ offense is looking horrible and out of sync and they have to face the Patriots this week. The Patriots’ defense has looked completely dominant up to this point and with the Redskins not even knowing who their quarterback is, it is not safe playing Dustin Hopkins this week or for probably the next few weeks.
Opponent: Kansas City Chiefs
Adam Vinatieri has not looked like himself this year. He is 4/7 on field-goal attempts and a miserable 8/11 on PATs. He has missed the most times of all kickers this season which has impacted the Colts’ outcomes in their games. He has scored the second-lowest amount of points among kickers so far this season. There are much better kicker options than Vinatieri that you can pick up any week.
Opponent: Green Bay Packers
The Cowboys have a very good offense but it is just too good for Maher to be worth any value. He has 4 field goals all season with the long coming from 28 yards. He has plenty of extra points so his floor is higher than most but his ceiling is barely off the ground. The Packers don’t help the cause this week as they have allowed one field goal per game on average. Maher just doesn’t kick many field goals which give kickers their real value.
Opponent: New York Jets
Jake Elliot is in the same boat as Brett Maher where he doesn’t get many opportunities to kick field goals. When the Eagles get into scoring position, they tend to find the endzone almost every time. The Jets also have a surprisingly good defense despite how bad their offense has been. Elliot has 5 total field goals on the season which ranks 3rd least among NFL kickers this season. That is not what you want out of your kicker.
Opponent: Minnesota Vikings
The Giants have looked better under the reigns of Daniel Jones but this week he will have to face an above-average defense for the first time. The Vikings have allowed just one field goal per game on average. Despite the Giants looking better, Rosas has had just one field goal attempt in each of the last 2 games with the long coming from 36 yards. I don’t see the Giants doing much against the Vikings this week.
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