Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

21 Aug 2010

Mandatory kickers?

An argument broke out in our draft over whether it was mandatory to take a kicker. Several players preferred not to draft them, then just skim waiver wire for favorable matchups on a week-to-week bases. We took a vote and the majority went along with that or didn't care, so that's what happened.

Are kickers mandatory in your drafts? What is the norm?

Posted by: andrew on 21 Aug 2010

4 replies , Last at 27 Aug 2010, 11:30am by Fontes of Wayne

Re: Mandatory kickers?
by dutchtreat :: Sat, 08/21/2010 - 10:11am

We got rid of this situation, by eliminating Kickers and Defenses from our League.

To answer your question, depends on the league. I've been in leagues where you are required to fill all starting positions with the draft. I've also been in leagues where you you didn't draft the kicker but all wavier wire pick-ups and drops cost $1 per transaction.

Bottom line: Don't make any rule changes regarding the draft while the draft is in progress.

Re: Mandatory kickers?
by andrew :: Mon, 08/23/2010 - 12:01pm

Yeah unfortunately this was run by a radio station, so we showed up when they told us to and not all these things had been thought through.

So yeah this was voted on during the draft. Fortunately prior to anyone taking a kicker, but still.

Re: Mandatory kickers?
by socctty :: Tue, 08/24/2010 - 5:51am

We have changed sites several times in the past few years, and I think that has a lot to do with whether you can get away with it. It's been a while since we used Yahoo but I don't think it would let you finish your draft without drafting players to fill out your starting lineup? Correct me if I'm wrong.

As far as our rules go, we don't require you to draft one. You'll end up picking one up later and whoever it was that you drafted will end up on waivers. If you decide to not start a kicker, that's your prerogative. I think most leagues follow these rules, and people who object are just afraid of the unknown; they suspect you are up to something nefarious.

I am the resident guy in our league who argues that we should get rid of kickers, but everyone else has a healthy dose of status quo bias and prefers to keep them. (I also rail against "fumbles recovered" and instead argue we should reward forced fumbles.)

I wouldn't get rid of defenses, though. The latest thing to annoy me in our league is to reward 50+ yard plays. This is the continuation of a trend where we started rewarding players for return yardage, primarily because of Devin Hester. I suspect people will be attracted towards reaching for guys like DeSean Jackson now, so perhaps I can get some value pickups.

Re: Mandatory kickers?
by Fontes of Wayne :: Fri, 08/27/2010 - 11:30am

I think ESPN still requires you to fill every starting position on the roster, but I know Y! does not.

My leagues don't care. I remember some very brief commotion when it first happened (one of my leaguemates figured it out about halfway through an email draft, told me, I told my roommate, and none of us drafted kickers), but we quickly decided that, since anyone could do it, it was fine. Now, we hold our drafts close enough to the beginning of the season that there's effectively no advantage to holding on to extra sleeper candidates.

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