Written/Ranked by Harley Schultz
1. Chris Boswell, Steelers @ BAL
Considering the revolving door the Steelers had at the kicker position earlier this year, I never expected them to find their kicker ranked number one for any given week. Chris Boswell has made Pittsburgh forget all those other ham-and-eggers they had earlier. Since joining Pittsburgh in Week 5, Boswell leads the league in field goals and he ranks second in total kicker points. Not to mention that over his last six games, he has averaged nearly 12 points per game. The Baltimore Ravens allow the second-most field goal attempts per game. This included four attempts to Josh Scobee before Pittsburgh kicked him to the curb following Week 4.
2. Steven Hauschka, Seahawks vs. STL
Thanks in part to Russell Wilson absolutely destroying a run of injury-ravaged, or mediocre, or in a couple cases putrid defenses, Steven Hauschka has been relegated to extra point specialist recently. Things reverted back to normal a bit last week as a lack of an explosive running game caused Seattle to actually stall out a few times. St. Louis has a pretty solid defense (much more so than that of Cleveland); Wilson and Company will probably stall out a few times this week as well. Their bend-but-don’t-break defense is currently allowing the fourth-most field goal attempts per game. This includes multiple attempts in all but four games this season.
3. Stephen Gostkowski, Patriots @ NYJ
When we get into December, we always begin to worry about how weather could potentially harm kickers. Fortunately for Stephen Gostkowski, he has been pretty automatic even during the fantasy playoffs historically speaking. Since 2013, Gostkowski is 18/20 on field goals with 23 extra points during Weeks 14-16. That works out to 8.5 points per game. This isn’t quite as good as the nearly 10 points per game he has put up this year, but it is still really impressive. Meanwhile, the Jets have allowed three field goal attempts in six of their last nine games.
4. Graham Gano, Panthers @ ATL
Graham Gano is another victim of an exceptionally hot offense. He has been limited to just three field goal attempts over the last three weeks. Despite the few opportunities, he still is averaging seven points per game over that span thanks to all of the extra points. On the year, Gano leads the league in extra point attempts and makes. This has helped propel him to the league’s second most total kicker points and a 9.4 point per game average. The Falcons provide a weather neutral environment for this week’s contest. At home this year, they are allowing the ninth-most field goal attempts. This includes three attempts each in three of their last four games.
5. Chandler Catanzaro, Cardinals vs. GB
This game has track meet written all over it. Two of the best offenses in the NFC will go at it against each other as both defenses will be minus one of their top defenders. Whether it comes via extra point or field goal both Mason Crosby and Chandler Catanzaro should be able to tally up pinball points this week. Catanzaro has multiple field goals in every game since Week 6. Over that span, he is averaging just less than 9.5 points per game.
6. Cairo Santos, Chiefs vs. CLE
The Cleveland Browns have allowed multiple field goal attempts in ten of their last twelve contests. This includes allowing 48 kicker points total over their last five games. Meanwhile, Kansas City has provided Cairo Santos a ton of opportunities this season. His 36 field goal attempts lead the league and his 29 successful field goals ranks second to only Stephen Gostkowski.
7. Blair Walsh, Vikings vs. NYG
Blair Walsh has the eighth-most kicker points this season. This comes despite his five field goal misses and three games with three points or fewer. In those other 11 games, he is averaging just less than 9.5 points per game. This past weekend, Adrian Peterson sustained an ankle injury. If he misses time it will only add to the Vikings struggles scoring touchdowns in the red zone. Currently they rank ninth-worst at 51%. If they continue to struggle or if their struggles increase it should lead to more attempts for Walsh. Opportunities should be present this time out anyways, since over their last six weeks, the New York Giants have allowed 16 field goal attempts and 13 successful field goals.
8. Justin Tucker, Ravens vs. PIT
A combination of a lack of healthy offensive weapons, and two awful quarterbacks have left the Ravens in a desperate way when it comes to scoring points. It reached critical mass for Justin Tucker last week when he settled for just two points in the Ravens dismantling by the Chiefs. This was the first game since Joe Flacco’s injury where Tucker was not allotted multiple field goal attempts. Thanks in part to all of the attempts Tucker has remained amongst the top six scoring kickers this year. His numbers would look even better if he had made some of the four field goals he has missed since Week 10. One thing Tucker can hang his hat on is that in his most recent five matchups with Pittsburgh he has averaged over 11 points per game.
9. Mason Crosby, Packers @ ARI
With a twelve point performance Sunday against Oakland, Mason Crosby topped double-digits for only the third time all year. Fortunately for his owners, he has been able to pick things up as the season has progressed. Over his last five games, Crosby is averaging 8.4 points per game. Over the last six weeks, Arizona has allowed alternating 2 or 1-field goal performances. Based on that trend, Green Bay is due to net two field goals in this contest.
10. Mike Nugent, Bengals @ DEN
With Andy Dalton out and facing a stern Broncos’ defense, A.J. McCarron will be hard pressed to get the ball into the red zone – let alone score. This could lead to several long field goal attempts for Mike Nugent. If you get bonus points for length that will only add to his value. After all, Denver’s Mile High air is known to let balls travel a little further than other places. Pairing that with McCarron’s stall outs should equate to a fair amount of potential points for the Nuge. Even if he just falls in line with his three week average of nine points per game, Nugent will be finishing a money kicker this week.
11. Robbie Gould, Bears @ TB
Robbie Gould is tied for fifth-most field goals this year. Eight times this year he has attempted three or more field goals in a game. Unfortunately for Gould, he has missed six field goals over the last eight weeks. His stats would look even more impressive if he didn’t go on that minor slump. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay has allowed three or more field goal attempts in four of their last seven games. With the game in Tampa, Gould doesn’t even have to worry about tricky Chicago wind gusts.
12. Dustin Hopkins, Redskins @ PHI
The Eagles have allowed eight points or more to seven of their last eight opponents’ kickers. This doesn’t even include an earlier eleven point outing by Dustin Hopkins way back in Week 4. Hopkins has been getting stronger as the year progressed and Kirk Cousins got more comfortable in the Redskins’ offense. He is averaging eight points per game over his last six contests.
13. Dan Bailey, Cowboys @ BUF
Amidst all the quarterback roulette in Dallas, Dan Bailey has quietly put up a stellar season. His 106 points ranks in the top-10 and he is tied for third in successful field goals. Buffalo has been tough against opposing kickers most of the year. That said over the last five weeks, they have allowed three or more field goal attempts in three of five games. Plus they are allowing over seven points per game to opposing kickers over that five game span.
14. Jason Myers, Jaguars @ NO
Jason Myers has been one of the most successful kickers this season but he has been victimized by Blake Bortles’ success recently. Over the last three weeks, Myers is averaging only six points per game. Prior to that, Myers had been on fire, averaging just less than 12 points per game between Week 9 and Week 12. Thanks in part to the leagues’ most 44 extra points, New Orleans find themselves allowing 7.7 points per game to the position.
15. Brandon McManus vs. CIN
Only twice this year has Cincinnati allowed double-digit points to an opposing kicker. Fortunately for Brandon McManus, both of those occurrences have come within the last five weeks. After an impressive start to the season with Peyton Manning under center, McManus has watched his stats evaporate as fast as the Denver snow when the weather reaches the high 40’s. He does have multiple field goals in six games, but only one of those contests has been in the second half of the season. What he does have going for himself is that he is still getting opportunities, despite missing three of his last ten field goal attempts.
Josh Lambo, Chargers @ OAK
No team has allowed more field goal attempts than Oakland. This includes nine attempts over the last two weeks and eight different weeks with three or more attempts. Over the course of the season, only twice have they not allowed multiple field goal attempts to their opposition. Josh Lambo has gone five straight weeks with just a single successful field goal each week. That said he does have multiple attempts in every game except three on the season.