It was not a great week for me at Kickertown HQ. A couple of could-be, woulda-been big games were foiled (mostly) by circumstance, but my picks weren’t all that bad in retrospect. You could have had Randy Bullock (and at 99% ownership in ESPN.com leagues, I’m sure some of you did).
Here’s how we did last week:
Robbie Gould – 7 points (T-17th)
Greg Zuerlein – 6 points (T-20th)
Two poor showings, but at the very least, I feel decent about my rationale.
Where I Went Wrong
A little of bad luck here, a little of bad analysis there. Zuerlein probably should have had a few more opportunities, but the Rams were down 24-3 at halftime. They had to play an aggressive, come-from-behind game this week. This caused them to take more chances on third down situations and caused them to go for it on fourth down twice (converting both); two missed point opportunities for The Leg. I figured that the St. Louis defense would be able to contain an ailing Falcons offense long enough to give The Leg some opportunities. Unfortunately, they were unable to do so early which compounded the problem. There will be more on the Gould pick in the next section as I think it more aptly fits there.
Where I Went Right
Minnesota’s defense is terrible, just as I suspected, and that allowed Gould to get four extra point attempts, as the Chicago offense carved up the Minnesota defense. In kicking, this is how it goes. If a defense is especially bad, a kicker will get the chance to score, just not as much as he would have otherwise. Such is the case with Gould, who still had a better game than some of the guys that are 100% owned, like Justin Tucker and Phil Dawson. Had there been a little bit of resistance by Minnesota against their division rivals, this would have been a huge game for Gould. However, I misread Minnesota a bit, and I paid for it.
Without further adieu, I’ll give you my two picks for Week 3.
Ryan Succop – KC @ PHI – Owned in 1.7% of ESPN Fantasy Leagues
I had the pleasure of watching the entire Eagles game, and let me tell you first hand: this pass defense is really, really bad. However, they did hold strong in their own territory on several occasions. I believe they are going to be a decent defense in short field situations, despite having no answers to the San Diego passing attack. Novak put up a whopping 18 points against Philly last week and I expect this trend to continue. I think Kansas City will be able to move the ball with moderate ease and get Ryan Succop opportunities to kick some field goals. Succop plays on Thursday, however, so if you plan on picking him up, you better do it quickly.
Garrett Hartley – NO v. ARI – STILL ONLY OWNED IN 22% OF ESPN FANTASY LEAGUES!
Seriously, people. What are we doing here? I recommended Hartley in Week 1 and said he had a nice schedule. And with two straight performances of 11+ points this guy is a no-brainer add for some of you crazies. Arizona allowed 14 points to The Leg in Week 1, and in Week 2, David Akers had three extra points and two field goal attempts (both misses). Opportunity has been there in bunches for kickers against Arizona and Hartley has been stellar this year. His 11 points last week could have been even better if not for a missed attempt. Hartley’s schedule might not be as good moving forward (as I originally thought), as Miami’s defense looks like it might actually be good. However, this week, this New Orleans kickers will be a top-10 play. If he’s still out there in leagues (and in most of your leagues he will be) I’d suggest picking him up immediately.
Extra Bonus Kicker Content
Since I was not as good as I would have liked to be last week (yes, I know that being wrong is part of the job), I want to give you one extra kicker: David Akers. Akers’ Lions play the Washington Redskins who are, as some have called it, “cover your eyes bad” on defense. Akers was cover your eyes bad last year and his two missed attempts last week don’t exactly inspire a ton of confidence. I think he will have opportunities this week, but odds are he might be a little over the hill and, possibly, toast. If you have Akers (owned in 70% of ESPN leagues), I would suggest holding on one more week just due to his matchup. If it weren’t for his Week 3 matchup, he would be a drop for me.