How To Pick Your One-Week Fantasy Football Defense & Kicker
These are the two aspects of daily fantasy sports roster selection that perhaps are deemed less important than other areas ? the Defense and the Kicker. However that doesn?t mean to say you should spend any less time on these positions ? every point is crucial in Daily Fantasy Sports, and by spending a little more time considering these positions you might gain that vital edge . Here is a guide to things you should consider when picking these positions, with some of the top rated in both going into 2014.
Here are the points on offer at both DraftKings and FanDuel.
0 points allowed 10 points
1-6 points allowed 7 points
7-13 points allowed 4 points
14-20 points allowed 1 point
21-27 points allowed 0 points
28-34 points allowed -1 points
35+ points allowed -4 points
Sack 1 point
Interception 2 points
Fumble Recovery 2 points
As you can see, the main point scoring consideration for the defense is how many points they actually concede, with points also on offer for sacks, interceptions and fumble recoveries. The first thing you should look at is how many points a team concedes per game when looking at selecting a defense. Here are the top six from last year:
Seattle Seahawks 14.4 points per game
Carolina Panthers 15.1 ppg
San Francsisco 49?ers 17.0 ppg
New Orleans Saints 19.0 ppg
Kansas City Chiefs 19.1 ppg
Cincinatti Bengals 19.1 ppg
You?ll notice that all of the above teams made the playoffs last year and five of those teams finished in the top 11 of points scored in the season. This leads me to the conclusion that when selecting a defense, although defensive qualities are important, you?ll generally want to be picking a good overall team, as a good offense will stop the opposition scoring (by staying on the field) just as much as a good defense will. Obviously, this is not the only thing you should consider. A weak quarterback prone to throwing interceptions is a good basis for picking the opposing defense, or a weak offensive line meaning that there?ll be plenty of sacks on offer.
Using the sportsbooks can also be a help in picking a defense. Look out for games with a low ?totals? number where one side is favored ? this side is not expected to give up many points.
When picking a defense at DraftKings, you?re actually picking a defense and a special team in conjunction with each other. If a team has a great punt or kickoff return specialist, then you should use this in considering which team to pick.
You?ll select a kicker when playing at FanDuel. Picking a kicker is another tricky area in daily fantasy sports. Here are the points on offer for this position.
Kick Extra Point 1 point
0-39 yards FG 3 points
40-49 yards FG 4 points
50+ yards FG 5 points
When picking a kicker you don?t necessarily want to pick the best kicker, you actually want a combination of a good kicker and a kicker who will see a lot of attempts. To illustrate this, Matt Prater of the Denver Broncos scored 96.2% of his field goals last year, which led the league. However, he only made 25 Field Goals, which was a lowly 18th in the standings. This is due to the fact that Peyton Manning was on fire last year and the majority of occasions when he got into field goal range, Manning would score a touchdown. Last year Steven Gostkowski made the joint most field goals (38), possibly due to the fact that Tom Brady had one of his worst seasons ? he was joined by Justin Tucker of the Ravens (due to the fact that Joe Flacco had his worst year as a Pro when it comes to his overall rating?).
Looking at this, you?ll want to select a kicker for a team who are likely to dominate a game, but do so without a quarterback who is on fire who will negate the need for the kicker. Obviously you?ll want a kicker who can make those field goals, so look at his overall percentage ? but remember, a kicker who makes three out of six field goals will score more than a kicker who makes two out of two.