For a complete list of sleepers and keepers, visit our draft kit.
How many times have you heard this on draft day..."Do we have to draft a kicker?" Poor guys. No one wants to draft them, yet if you don't pay attention they could come back to bite you in the backside. Here is a look at a few you should know.
Breakouts - Guys who are stepping into a starting role ready for a breakout season. These are guys that are well known and will go high on draft day.
Sleepers - Similar to the above, but of the lesser known variety and much higher risk. They may or may not be late round picks in your draft.
Use Caution - Sure to be drafted players that may not meet lofty expectations.
Jimmy Stevens, Oklahoma - Stevens nailed down the starting spot after Week Three last season and didn't look back. The coach staff's confidence in Stevens' ability to bang home field goals grew as the season wore on and he finished a 13-of-15 for three during a five game stretch. He doesn't have a big leg, and Michael Hunnicutt or Patrick O'Hara might attempt the long rangers, but the Sooners' offense is so potent, they'll set Stevens up for plenty of chip shots and extra points. Stevens finished 16th in fantasy points last year, but he'd be my #1 kicker off the board because of the OU offense.
Philip Welch, Wisconsin - Once Russell Wilson signed with the Badgers, most wanted to know how he projected our his impact on running backs Montee Ball and James White. One of the first things I thought was 'man Welch will make a killer fantasy kicker.' Yes, I'm an odd bird. That has already been established time and time again by my drafting strategies. Wilson, coupled with a strong running game, should provide a windfall for the three-year starter and the All-Big Ten honorable mention kicker from 2010. However, keep an eye on his injury status; he's missed practice with a leg injury. Hopefully he'll be back this week.
Justin Tucker, Texas - Justin Tucker was sixth in the Big Twelve in fantasy scoring among kickers last fall. This was largely because the Longhorns' ineptitude in finding the end zone last fall. Field goals, however, were not an issue as Tucker connected on 23-of-27 attempts in 2010. If you are of the belief the that the Longhorn's offense can't be any worse and they can only go up, you'd be wise to invest in Tucker on draft day.
David Harman, Central Michigan - The Chips return a veteran quarterback that threw for over 3000 yards last fall. However, they struggled to find the end zone. That should change in year two under coach Dan Enos and Harman should be a benefactor.
Tyler Hadden, Hawaii - We can't stress this enough, do not start a kicker in Week One unless he was the clear starter the year before or you know for sure he will start this year. Kicker information is hard to come by and you don't want to ruin your week by getting zero kicker points. Hadden is in the driver's seat to start right now, but Kenton Chung will push him during camp.
Jake Van Ginkel, Boise State - See Hadden above. The freshman is expected to come in and win the job, but there are no guarantees
Tyler Bitancurt, West Virginia - It is tempting to draft Bitancurt with the Mountaineers new offense. However, Bitancurt struggled last season, making just 10-of-17 kicks on the season with a long of 43 yards. He was just 2-7 from 40-49 yards out. If he doesn't improve, he could be riding the pine.