Fantasy Football’s Most Dangerous- Dan Bailey
The kicker is really never thought of as being a dangerous position in fantasy football. However, in recent years the “forgotten three” positions, tight end, team defense, and kicker; have become much more important. This is because most teams tend to want to split the backfield load between two running backs. As a result fantasy football owners have been forced to find a way to make up those fantasy points elsewhere.
The way this is done is to choose solid players at positions that have been historical non-factors in the game. This means fantasy owners are willing to spend much higher draft picks in order to ensure they are solid at the position. This can be a good thing, but it does come at a cost. By drafting a kicker in the 11th or 12th rounds, a fantasy owner is sacrificing a better option on the bench at running back or wide receiver or maybe even neglecting a backup quarter back.
Going into 2015 no kicker looks more dangerous for a fantasy owner than Dan Bailey of the Dallas Cowboys. Bailey tied for the sixth most fantasy points among kickers meaning he is on that boarder of being worthy of taken in a round high than the final two.
However, in order to properly evaluate whether or not he is worth this risk one must look at the situation he was in last season. For the first time in a long time, the Cowboys focused on running the ball. They were even willing to hand the ball off in the red zone.
When thinking about kickers, it is very important to consider how an offense operates. Typically, high scoring offenses that can move the ball are preferred. This is obviously because the team has a much better chance of getting into field goal range. How the move the ball is just as important though. Being able to move the ball on the ground is much better for kickers than a team that can air it out and score every time they drive down the field. It is not ever season that a new record for the most touchdowns in history is set.
Dan Bailey greatly benefitted from the success of Demarco Murray. Because of Murray, the Cowboys were willing to run the ball and eat up the clock more than in year past. This also helped Bailey once the team was in the red zone. The team was willing to try to score on the ground. Since this does not always work, Bailey had more opportunities to make a couple of chip shots to pad his fantasy totals.
Looking ahead to this season, Bailey happens to be a huge question mark. It has nothing to do with his own talent, but instead the talent that will surround him. Since Demarco Murray departed, this would mean they would need to bring in another solid running back. In order to Bailey to benefit, it would need to be a really good running back. If it is just an average running back, one can deduce from the team’ history that they will go back to being a pass first run second team rather than the balance attack that did so much good for them last year.
Since Murray left, it may just be best to either take a different kicker in the higher rounds or wait to grab him in the last round. The good news is that if he does not pan out, there are always many suitable options on the waiver wire in league that have a standard number of owners such as ten man or even twelve man league.