As we approach the games of Week 7, fantasy owners are reacting to the myriad of injury reports coming down the line.
The waiver wire is churning as a result, with receivers and running backs flying off the board. Those who subscribe to mobile alerts regarding such information would be wise to set their devices to the “vibrate” mode, as the injuries are piling up.
This week, there’s actually a top-tier kicker on the list as well. Nate Kaeding sits out Week 7 against the Patriots because of a groin injury. Does his replacement find the mark?
Top 5 Kickers
(other than Mason Crosby)
Ryan Succop vs. Jacksonville
Succop has been a solid contributor for fantasy owners to date, having converted 8-of-10 field goals and 12 PATs through five games. He’s on the radar for a big-time effort this week against the 31st-ranked Jacksonville defense. The Jaguars are surrendering 27.8 points per game while giving up 375 total yards per game. Think about that. Opposing kickers are averaging two field goals and three PATs per game.
Matt Prater vs. Oakland
Prater has been one of the prime beneficiaries of Kyle Orton’s early-season heroics. He has a big leg, having converted 11-of-12 field goal tries and 13 PATs through six games. Oakland ranks 28th in total defense (25.2 points per game). The Raiders have been unable to slow opposing running games, thereby allowing passing games to find space downfield.
Robbie Gould vs. Washington
The Bears rank 29th in total yardage, producing just 285.2 yards per contest. However, the third-ranked defense (16.2 points per game) has helped win the field-position battle and put Gould in line for frequent tries. Gould has converted multiple field goals with a total of 10 PATs in four of his past five games (with at least one conversion in every game).
Jeff Reed at Miami
Reed posted a smallish fantasy effort last week against the Browns. He did not attempt a field goal, but did power four PATs through the uprights. Reed will be much more active this week against a stingy Miami defense. Pittsburgh will move the ball with Ben Roethlisberger under center. However, I’m expecting the Dolphins to stiffen in the red zone.
Garrett Hartley vs. Cleveland
Hartley converted one field goal and four PATs in his return to the placekicker role for the Saints in Week 6. He’s set for a huge date at home against the 17th-ranked Cleveland defense (20.8 points allowed per game). Drew Brees celebrates his second child with a huge day, and Hartley’s there to punctuate his efforts.
Olindo Mare vs. Arizona
With only four field-goal conversions through five games, it’s hard to get overly excited about Mare this weekend against the Cardinals. However, I was encouraged by the strides made by the Seattle offense in Week 6, and I suspect that Matt Hasselbeck will be able to move the ball against this 29th-ranked Arizona defense (27.6 points allowed per game).
Kris Brown vs. New England
Brown stands in for the injured Nate Kaeding this weekend. Kaeding is one of many injured San Diego offensive heroes. As such, I’m putting his replacement on the board for a big effort. Philip Rivers moves the ball with Craig “Buster” Davis and Patrick Crayton, but Brown’s called upon to finish drives.
David Akers at Tennessee
Akers struggled terribly in a big spot against the Falcons last week with three missed field goals. He’s now missed 4-of-11 tries this season. I’m moderately concerned about the Philadelphia offense this week against the attacking Tennessee defense. Akers could be active if Kevin Kolb finds any success downfield, but I’m not anticipating a big effort.
Ryan Longwell at Green Bay
I know Favre’s returning to Lambeau Field again, but can’t Longwell get some love, too? Longwell has converted only four field goals this season (and 10 PATs). With Clay Matthews back in the lineup, you can expect the Packers to bring the heat on Favre and disrupt the offensive flow. Favre might find his magic again, but I’m not anticipating huge output here.