For fantasy managers that find themselves in their respective fantasy championship game this week, it means placing importance on every position in the starting lineup, even the lone kicker. While normally a position that one can easily gloss over, the weather conditions this late in the year may force you to second-guess who you are rolling with for Week 17. Thankfully, we have some options to start and some names to avoid at the kicker position this week.
Cameron Dicker, Los Angeles Chargers vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Dicker was a perfect 2-for-2 in field goal attempts on Monday night versus the Colts, finishing with 8.0 fantasy points and another reliable week for fantasy managers. While he has not posted high-volume fantasy totals, he has boasted consistent value in lineups, and this week he will be among the options kicking in an indoor stadium, which is a luxury at this time of year. Finding solid kickers playing in matchups where the weather is not a factor is a sound strategy this week, and Dicker fits the bill.
Riley Patterson, Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Houston Texans
Add Patterson to the list of kickers playing in an indoor stadium to close out the regular season, and the icing on the cake is that he’s playing for one of the league’s best offenses over the past month. Over the last three games, the Jaguars are tied for first in field goal attempts per game (3.3), and they’ve been incredibly efficient in moving the chains, ranking fifth in yards per play (6.2). Patterson should be able to capitalize with a number of opportunities in the red zone versus a susceptible Texans defense.
Daniel Carlson, Las Vegas Raiders vs. San Francisco 49ers
Carlson has long been a reliable option for fantasy managers, but he has arguably the worst matchup he could ask for in Week 17. The 49ers allow the fewest fantasy points per game to opposing kickers (4.27), and there is a great likelihood that San Francisco limits an already stagnant Raiders offense coming into this matchup. The 49ers already allow the fewest yards per play (4.8) to their opponents, and the recent struggles for Las Vegas have resulted in few scoring opportunities for Carlson. In the last three weeks, the Raiders have averaged just 1.7 field goal attempts per game, which is tied for the ninth-fewest in that span.
Jason Sanders, Miami Dolphins vs. New England Patriots
New England allows the ninth-fewest fantasy points (6.47) to opposing kickers, so Sanders already had the odds stacked against him in Week 17. But with the news that Tua Tagovailoa has recently entered concussion protocol once more, it remains to be seen just how effective this Dolphins offense will be. Teddy Bridgewater, the likely starter if Tagovailoa can’t play, is an experienced veteran, but the Patriots' defense has been strong this season, in particular on special teams. Over their last three games, New England has surrendered just 1.3 field goal attempts per game to their opponents.