We are at the final regular season week of the NFL season and with it actually brings a good DFS weekend if you ask me. On the surface you might look and think 15 games with lots of backups and teams not motivated and want to stay away. But when you look closer you should realize that it brings us the Early 7 game slate, Late 8 game slate and then of course the regular 15 game Main slate that makes this very appealing. Sure, some teams are out of it but have the Lions, Jaguars, Broncos, Bengals, Jets, Patriots been relevant all year? No. And they aren’t going to suddenly start putting up 40 points this weekend or atleast not at a high enough confidence level for us to even worry about most of those spots.
INJURIES AND MOTIVATION FACTORS
- No Ryan Fitzpatrick this week due to COVID-19, Tua time again.
- Alvin Kamara is on COVID-19 list which brings Latavius Murray and Ty Montgomery into play.
- Cooper Kupp is on COVID-19 list which really takes a way a ton from that offense too — boost for Robert Woods & the TE
- Colts / Browns / Titans / Dolphins all need to win. In the case of the Colts, they need help.
- Cardinals vs Rams — both teams need to win but Rams can get in with help
- Packers need a win to secure #1 seed
- Bears can secure playoff berth with a win or help
- Seattle needs a win and Packers/Saints losses to secure #1 seed
- Saints need a win, Packers loss and Seahawks win to secure #1 seed.
QB: Lamar Jackson, Aaron Rodgers, DeShaun Watson
RB: Malcolm Brown, Alexander Mattison, Derrick Henry, Myles Gaskin
WR: Davante Adams, Justin Jefferson, Josh Reynolds, Calvin Ridley, Marvin Jones
TE: Darren Waller, Jordan Akins, Irv Smith Jr
DEF: Browns, Chargers
#1 – Running to the Dance
Have you ever seen an absolute beat down? Like really, a serious beat down? Well pull up a chair and turn on the ole television this Sunday at 1:00 PM EST and find that Browns vs Steelers game. I don’t care what WR the Browns have coming back in this week, they’re going to run it straight down the Steelers throats all game long.
The Cleveland Browns reach the playoffs behind Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt and their dominant run game. That is it, that is the play.
#2 – Robinson vs Adams
One game which appears like it will live up to the hype is going to be in Chicago where the suddenly surging Bears are fighting to get into the playoffs with Mitch Trubisky at the helm!?!?! What in the world is going on here. But this game has great value in it and while some might think its an Aaron Jones vs David Montgomery spot I love the history that Davante Adams and Allen Robinson have had going up against each other.
You must have WR with upside of 125 yards and 2 TD this week. Both Allen Robinson and Davante Adams fit that mold.
#3 – The Blowout Effect
Expect some blowouts this weekend and the best way to capitalize on it is to fully stack a team which can include Quarterback AND Defense, it can be Quarterback, Running Back, Defense, it can be QB with three pass catchers. The point is that we should expect some scores which are like 38-10 this weekend and the team who scores 38 is more than likely going to be one that you could have stacked given many other games will be 7-6 or 13-10 snoozers.
Do not be afraid to stack in many different ways a single team this week.
#4 – Avoid some rest spots
I do not want to get too cute with some teams who have little motivation to come out and do much this weekend and I wouldn’t be doing that if I were you either. The Texans can talk all they want about putting up a fight against the Titans but they won’t be able to slow down Tennessee’s offense and will be too one dimensional themselves on offense to sustain a fight. The Chiefs, Bills and Steelers are among teams who have already mailed it in for this weekends games or should likely pull guys mid way through to prepare for the playoffs. The Seahawks, Saints, Rams could easily wind up doing the same as well. And then there’s those teams who have their sights already set on going to parties and dinners without having to worry about contract tracing because they’ve been eliminated from the playoffs for a while now. Be smart where you pick to go into teams who aren’t playing for much this weekend.
Dont get cute and let others chase some broken dreams of teams who are fantasizing of non COVID protocols.
I want to find a reason to tell you that Lamar won’t get 20 fantasy points in his sleep this week and honestly the only path I can envision is him coming down with COVID or a case of the Paul Pierce’s. With upside in the passing game as well this week Lamar should do more than just rush for his usual 70-80 yards and a touchdown and is squarely the #1 “high dollar” QB to consider.
In Week 17 I look for any stacks I can possibly find. Game stack, team stack, you name it, I am shopping there. This sets up to be a good game stack spot with both teams realistically having a shot to sneak into the playoffs and host a playoff game. The Giants were looking great before Jones got injured, but have lost three in a row and now need help to win the NFC East. Jones returned in week 16 throwing 41 times vs Baltimore and should improve on his accuracy and productivity vs the bad Dallas Cowboys defense.
Another team we can stack on offense? The Vikings! Yes, a team who has nothing to play for and just got whooped on Christmas Day. Cousins and the Vikings will be without Dalvin Cook vs Detroit this weekend and while Alexander Mattison certainly gets some love at RB, it’s Cousins-Theilen-Jefferson who I lean on the most in this spot. Detroit has yielded points to anyone that walks into their building and I have a very sneaky suspicion that Stafford will give it a go on the other side and we see a nice little shootout between two non playoff teams with veteran QB’s. Please note: Down below I am not mentioning Theilen and Jefferson because they’re not one off plays. This is a full stack play.
Just missed the cut: Kyler Murray, Russell Wilson
Not Touching: Aaron Rodgers
Expect Chubb to finish as the highest scoring RB on this slate unless Kareem Hunt vultures all the touchdowns inside the five yard line. Cleveland can make the playoffs and they’re getting a Steeler team who aint got no desire to even walk onto the field this week now that they got a win and secured the division last weekend.
Just look up what he did in the exact same spot vs Houston in Week 17 last year. They need the win and Houston cannot stop the run.
What a wild ride it has been for Jonathan Taylor and DFS players this year. One month he is up and the next month he is down, but the guy who has been so chalky all season long can’t get ignored against a terrible Jaguars rush defense in a must win and hope for help spot. This could quickly turn ugly for the Jags and Taylor has looked much better the second half of this season, including five touchdowns over their last three games.
Miami is another team who needs a win and faces a team that might let up slightly. Buffalo can hold onto the #2 seed with a win over the Dolphins and knock their division rivals out of the playoff race, but with Tua starting I like Gaskin’s yardage total to go up.
Just Missed The Cut: Alexander Mattison (I prefer Cousins & passing game or roll Mattison as part of a full Vikings stack)
Not Touching: Malcolm Brown
Allen Robinson II
If Chicago is going to win, they’ll have to find a way to get Allen Robinson going and he is my sleeper WR of this weekend. ARob has had no problems when facing this Packers defense as Jahire Alexander usually does not shadow him and it has shown. Robinson in the last three meetings has seen 40 targets, hauling in 22 of them with two 100+ yard receiving games. The volume cannot be ignored and it’s a must win situation for the Bears who have been riding this David Montgomery train a little bit too long now. Bears win behind Robinson.
Adams has had two teams that historically have presented what appear to be tough spots within the division. One used to be the Vikings (used to be!), and the other has been the Chicago Bears. But that is just on paper and whenever Adams has faced Chicago I always run to him. Now in his best season yet with the #1 seed on the line, Adams to me is the clear plug and play WR of week 17. Pricing doesn’t kill us as bad in week 17 on players and Adams has been a staple for 20 fantasy points every time out this year. In 7 games dating back to 2017 against Chicago Adams has 37 catches for 510 yards and 5 touchdowns. No reason with the volume he will get to expect him to be under 5-80 and a touchdown in this spot and that’s just him getting started. Take the safe points.
When the Saints faced off against Carolina earlier this year they went in without both Michael Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders. They’ll once again be without Thomas this week and now are also without Alvin Kamara. It will likely wind up being Sanders who slides into the #1 role to settle in for a high catch game. The Saints are saying they will be playing their starters in this game as they have an outside shot at a #1 seed still and this is the final tune up for Brees to continue to get back into a groove before the playoffs. Brees has had great success vs the Carolina defense in the past and should have good time to find his targets over the middle of the field and I love Sanders to have a heavy volume day in the passing game.
It’s a must win situation almost for the Rams this week and they need to get the ball in the hands of Woods who is really one of their few playmakers available in this game. I really do anticipate that John Wolford is going to produce well enough for the Rams in this game and almost put him in the top 3 QB for the week but didn’t need his salary savings that badly. Woods should see over 10 targets and usually gets goal line work as well in the ground game on end-arounds.
25 targets in the last three week for Slayton against defenses (Bal, Cle, Ari) which are more challenging than the Cowboys secondary. This is a great spot for the Giants passing game and Slayton at $4,100 on DK is a steal this week.
The second WR have been the better targets vs Giants this year to avoid James Bradberry and in my favorite early only game of the day Lamb gets the nod with Cooper drawing the tougher assignment.
Just Missed The Cut: AJ Brown, Brandin Cooks, Justin Jefferson
Not Touching: Calvin Ridley, Mike Evans
Andrews is coming off a season high 11 target game last week, but realistically he will drop back down to his usual 5-6 targets. We need him to get into the endzone at that rate but the Bengals are one of the bottom 5 overall vs TE this season, so his floor is very solid.
Engram has had solid success vs the Cowboys and if you are stacking the Giants and this game like I am then you will want him.
Death. Taxes. Saints TE scoring vs the Carolina Panthers. Cook himself has scored in all three games played against the Panthers in his time with the Saints and with Kamara being out it opens things up even more for Cook to keep this streak going. Sanders and Cook will have to carry New Orleans this week.
Just Missed The Cut: Nobody
Not Touching: Everybody else
Ah yes, it’s Myles Garrett against Mason Rudolph week. Browns will be hungry and Pittsburgh has already waived the white flag in this one.
After winning two in a row the Bengals are going to move back into the Bungles mode this week.
I picked on their pass defense last week but I like them back at home to get plenty of sacks on the Jaguars who are ready to go out and party now that COVID testing is no longer an issue for them
THE AMBUSH Q&A
QUESTION: Who is getting overlooked this week and why is it DK Metcalf and the Seahawks offense?
Look, even I think the Niners are going to win this game as you can see below, but if Seattle wants to hang around in it to try and get the #1 or #2 seed then we’re going to see a huge game from Metcalf who simply went for 12 and 161 w/ 2 TD vs San Francisco earlier this season.
QUESTION: Favorite 1PM and 4PM only stacks and plays?
1PM ONLY – Vikings look like a very tempting stack on this ugly 1PM only slate. Them along with the Ravens and Browns could play out well but I am personally going to be getting a lot of the Giants in my 1PM only lineup as crazy as it sounds.
4PM ONLY – Packers/Bears is the marquee game of the week to pair with the Colts and Titans.
QUESTION: What’s the game you do not have a lot of players in which scares you to go off?
Seahawks and Niners
QUESTION: Favorite Bets of the week?