Week 1 is in the books and it was a mildly frustrating week for the boys over at Kicker HQ. First, let’s take a look at last week’s picks:
Garrett Hartley – 12 points (tied for 4th amongst kickers)
Adam Vinatieri – 3 points (tied for 27th amongst kickers)
As promised, I want to have total and complete transparency here. I felt good about my picks for Week 1, but there were definitely places I faltered. Each week, I will be giving you a breakdown of what I had right and what I had wrong.
Where I went wrong:
I am not sure if the Raiders defense is better than I expected, or if the Colts offense is worse than I expected. Regardless, the Colts only scored three times on their way to a nail-biting victory in Indy. This significantly affected my Vinatieri pick, as his opportunity seemed absent. I will be inclined to see which side of the ball is most responsible for the Colts’ lack of offensive production.
Where I went right:
The Saints, as expected, moved the ball well and had a couple stalled drives. This is likely the product of Mark Ingram being a bad football player and Atlanta’s defense not being as bad as we thought. I expected a few stall outs, which lead to field goal attempts and that’s exactly what happened. Hartley went 3/3 on his attempts and kicked two extra points (his longest was kicked from 48 yards out, which only helped). Being indoors helped his long attempt and if you managed to pick up Hartley (as opposed to Vinatieri), I’m sure you are smiling from on high right now.
Now that we’ve covered the past, let’s look ahead to the future. The following are my kicker suggestions for Week 2.
Greg Zuerlein – STL @ ATL – Owned in 36.9% of ESPN.com Leagues
The Leg had a monster Week 1, finishing as the league’s top kicker. Can he do it again? My bet is probably not, but he’s still a very solid play this week in Atlanta. Atlanta’s defense is good, but I do not think they are great. And this just in: the St. Louis Rams might actually be decent at American football! At the very least, I am confident they can be moderately good on offensive. There are a few weapons in St. Louis, especially if Jared Cook continues his production(and I think he will), which makes the Rams an intriguing offense to watch going forward. The Leg might not be the most accurate kicker in the world, but he does have nice range. Kicking indoors will be great for his opportunity, and in Week 2 I believe he will be a very nice play. Zuerlein will not be owned at such a low percentage for too long, so pick him up while you can.
Robbie Gould – CHI vs. MIN – Owned in 14.1% of ESPN.com Leagues
Gould also had a decent Week 1, as he was tied for 11th place amongst kickers. I expect his production to continue as they take on Minnesota in Week 2. I understand that it is harder to kick field goals in an open-air stadium, but the fact remains that Minnesota looked incapable of stopping anything that Detroit threw at them in Week 1. The Bears passing attack looked pretty good last week and I think they will be able to move the ball on Minnesota, which will open up plenty of opportunity for Gould to kick field goals. I think that Gould is somewhat trendy, at least as far as kickers go, so be quick to your free agent list after waivers process if you intend to play him in Week 2. I would like this play a little bit more if the Bears were in Minnesota, but beggars can’t be choosers.