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According to the Data: How Important Are Kickers and Defenses?

Keith Platte

Keith Platte

Keith Platte writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.


As a veteran fantasy football player, I have reached what I call "Position Analysis Limit." This means I have mined as much data as I can and feel confident in my strategy and player rankings for QB, RB, WR and TE. As more and more websites are created with fantasy football rankings, I am shifting my focus toward the often neglected positions: Kicker and Defense. In the past, Defenses and Kickers were afterthoughts, generally selected at the end or relatively close to the end of drafts. However, I am re-examining this strategy and asking: should Kickers or Defenses actually be targeted, and what is the value of a top Defense or Kicker have when compared to the "average" for these positions?

Let's start with Kickers:



I analyzed the last three years of data for Kickers, i.e., field-goals made by distance and extra points. I converted the three seasons of data into FF points from four c

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