Denver Broncos kicker Matt Prater is arguably the best in the league at his position, though the likes of Stephen Gostkowski and Steven Hauschka might have something to say about that. Prater wasn’t just a benefactor of the Mile High air when he boomed kicks for touchbacks and nailed long field goals with regularity, as he was still a beast away from his home. A top fantasy football pick at kicker (for those who unwisely select kickers higher than the last round), Prater is locked in to rack up points as the man capping off the high-powered Broncos’ positive drives.
Unfortunately, the Denver Post’s Mike Klis reports that the star kicker has been suspended by the NFL for the first four games of the season due to violating the league’s substance-abuse policy, and Klis reports that the suspension is “alcohol-related”. Alcohol issues aren’t new for Prater, who entered the league’s alcohol program after being arrested for a DUI back in 2011.
The Broncos current replacement on the roster is unknown commodity Mitch Ewald, who is a rookie from Indiana, so the Broncos could very well sign a veteran as an interim replacement. Prater will be back to his awesome self after he serves his suspension, but this surely puts his fantasy owners in an awkward position. The Broncos have the biggest juggling to do right now, but missing four games of Prater isn’t a big deal for them.
Last season, the 30-year-old nailed 25 of his 26 field goals, boomed 81 touchbacks, and was a whopping 75-for-75 on extra point attempts. Oh, and he also broke the record for the longest field goal in history with a 64-yard gem.