First Tier: 1. Stephen Gostkowski, Patriots; 2. Matt Bryant, Falcons; 3. Justin Tucker, Ravens.
Commentary: The best of the best. While the Patriots and Falcons will score a ton, what makes Tucker so good is he consistently hits from 50-plus yards when Baltimore’s drives stall, and they’ll stall more often than New England or Atlanta. That means more chances for field goals rather than extra points.
Second Tier: 4. Adam Vinatieri, Colts; 5. Dan Bailey, Cowboys; 6. Mason Crosby, Packers; 7. Wil Lutz, Saints.
Commentary: If you don’t get a first-tier kicker, these guys are just as good. Vinatieri is in a similar situation as Tucker. With Ezekiel Elliott suspended the first four games, expect more Dallas marches to come up short, giving Bailey increased field-goal opportunities. Crosby might his a rough patch now and then, but he’s still decent and is on a team that scores. The same goes for Lutz.
Third Tier: 8. Matt Prater, Lions; 9. Sebastian Janikowski, Raiders; 10. Graham Gano, Panthers.
Commentary: These are the last of the “sure things.” There’s a little baggage with each kicker from this point on.
Fourth Tier: 11. Dustin Hopkins, Redskins; 12. Caleb Sturgis, Eagles; 13. Brandon McManus, Broncos; 14. Cairo Santos, Chiefs; 15. Steven Hauschka, Bills; 16. Chris Boswell, Steelers.
Fifth Tier: 17. Josh Lambo, Chargers; 18. Nick Folk, Buccaneers; 19. Nick Novak, Texans; 20. Ryan Succop, Titans; 21. Blair Walsh, Seahawks; 22. Kai Forbath, Vikings; 23. Phil Dawson, Cardinals.