The 2022 fantasy football playoffs are here with many leagues in the championship round this week. The must-win games are here. Our Fantasy Football Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em Week 17 picks help you identify values to target and fades to avoid
It is also crucial to know which waiver wire picks to make and to stay up-to-date on the injury report. Let’s take a look at some players to target or fade in the Fantasy Football Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em Week 17.
Editor’s note: This article is written by Bradley Stalder.
Jared Goff (Detroit Lions)
Jared Goff is a must-start in your championship week. He’s been the hottest quarterback as of late, finishing as a top-4 QB in three of the last four weeks. Much is made about Goff’s home-road splits, where Goff has finished with 17+ fantasy points at home in seven of eight games. The Bears have the worst defense DVOA in the NFL and the fewest defensive sacks in the NFL. In a dome, at home with the highest projected game total this week, Goff has the weapons in Amon-Ra St. Brown, DJ Chark, and D’Andre Swift to drub the Bears.
Gardner Minshew (Philadelphia Eagles)
In his spot start in Week 16, Minshew finished as the QB5 on the week. Last Sunday, Minshew threw 2 TDs, rushed for another, and passed for 355 yards on 24 completions. A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith crushed even with Dallas Goedert returning from injured reserve. The Eagles are 6.5-point favorites in this home game against the New Orleans Saints. Minshew is on the streaming radar as long as Jalen Hurts recovers from injury.
Deshaun Watson (Cleveland Browns)
The Browns are officially eliminated from the playoffs, and Deshaun Watson has played a big part in that failure. Watson has only completed 57% of his passes, averages 175 pass yards, and scores 12.3 fantasy points per game. Watson has finished as the QB20 or worse in three of his four games. Year 1 of the Browns-Watson marriage has not gone well. Washington also allows the 7th fewest passing yards to quarterbacks (198) per game.
Teddy Bridgewater (Miami Dolphins)
Tua Tagovailoa is expected to miss Week 17 due to concussion protocol. In the two games Teddy Bridgewater has filled in for Tagovailoa and thrown more than 20 passes, he’s averaged 16 fantasy points per game. However, he faces the New England Patriots at home who rank as the 3rd toughest pass DVOA matchup on the season. Last season, Teddy Bridgewater finished above QB15 only three times in 14 games. Those are certainly reasons to temper expectations and find better streaming options among QBs.
Brian Robinson (Washington Commanders)
Fantasy managers can’t ignore the volume Brian Robinson has accumulated. In three of the last four games, Robinson has at least 20 touches. While only one of those games turned into a top-10 fantasy week (RB4 Week 12 vs ATL), Robinson gets a porous Cleveland defense that has nothing to play for in Week 17. The Browns are the 3rd most favorable rushing DVOA matchup and allow the 3rd most fantasy points to running backs. Volume + favorable matchup = major start for Robinson as a solid RB2.
D’Andre Swift (Detroit Lions)
Swift might have had his worst fantasy outing of the season in Week 16 against Carolina. But, Swift is poised for a bounce-back in Week 17. Swift played the 2nd most snaps of the season and still had 9 opportunities against Carolina. Those are underlying metrics that suggest he should have had a bigger day. In fact, Swift only caught 1 of his 5 targets in that game. The Bears allow the 4th most fantasy points to opposing RBs and are the 4th most favorable rush DVOA matchup. In a game that should turn into a shootout, Swift has the talent and is set to boom.
Antonio Gibson (Washington Commanders)
Do not plan to start Antonio Gibson in Week 17. He’s seriously questionable with a sprain and has missed practices this week. Even though it’s a plus matchup against the Browns, Gibson hasn’t rushed 10+ times since Week 11 and has finished no better than the RB35 in each of the last four games. If Gibson doesn’t go this week, Jonathan Williams is a deep-league desperation consideration in the Washington backfield.
Jamaal Williams (Detroit Lions)
Williams had his worst game of the season in Week 16 against the Panthers, setting season lows in snap %, rush attempts, rush yards, and fantasy points. While he is expected to go against a generous Chicago Bears front-7, Williams may still be nursing a leg injury that limited his playing time against the Panthers. Williams hasn’t rushed for more than 37 yards nor has he scored in each of the last three games. In his last matchup against the Bears, Williams finished 16-59 on the ground. He did fall into the endzone in the last matchup but with limited snaps is not a trustworthy RB2 in championship week.
Garrett Wilson (New York Jets)
Mike White is expected back, which means good news for Garrett Wilson. In White’s 2-game absence, Garrett Wilson only caught 8 passes on 18 targets and had an average weekly finish of WR49. In White’s three starts, Wilson averaged 6 receptions for 112 yards and finished as the WR13. That resulted in two top-7 weekly finishes. Seattle is a plus Pass DVOA matchup and should allow for Wilson to “get his” in a nice rebound game.
DeVonta Smith (Philadelphia Eagles)
Fantasy managers should make excuses for DeVonta Smith to make their fantasy lineups in Week 17. Over the last 4 weeks, DeVonta Smith has the 3rd most receiving yards (405) only behind Justin Jefferson and teammate AJ Brown, 2nd highest yards per reception (17.6) among WRs with 20+ targets, 2nd among WRs in yards after the catch per reception, and 7th in yards per route run. Smith may be WR15 in fantasy points per game, but he has come on strong near the end of the season. Even with AJ Brown and Dallas Goedert also playing well. The DB projected to line up across from Smith, Paulson Adebo, has allowed 50+ receiving yards in 5 games this season despite only averaging a 50% shadow rate. Smith should have plenty of room to work in Week 17.
Jahan Dotson (Washington Commanders)
Dotson has quietly put up a solid rookie season despite a mid-season injury. Dotson has finished as a top-25 WR in six of his nine games where he played 50%+ snaps. Since Week 13, Dotson ranks as the 6th highest RECV-graded WR per PFF. In 5 games with Carson Wentz this season, Dotson has scored 5 TDs and averaged over 6 targets per game. Dotson projects to line up against Greg Newsome who just recently allowed 63 receiving yards to Trent Sherfield and 63 yards to Trent Taylor.
Mike Evans (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
If Mike Evans is on a fantasy managers’ roster in the championship round, it’s most likely despite Mike Evans and not because of Evans. Evans has finished no better than the WR32 each of the last 6 weeks, even though he’s averaged over 7 targets during that span. Evans hasn’t scored a touchdown since Week 4 vs. Kansas City. The last time Evans played Carolina, he caught 9 passes for 96 yards on 15 targets. Evans has had no more than 11 targets in any other game this season. And despite the plus matchup against CJ Henderson, this feels like a trap in Week 17. Henderson has allowed more than 47 receiving yards only 4 times on the season– including limiting Evans to 2 catches on 4 targets for only 26 yards in Week 7.
Davante Adams (Las Vegas Raiders)
Is this panicking too much about Derek Carr’s benching? Perhaps not. Even with Derek Carr, Adams had finished as WR38 or worse each of the last 3 weeks, averaging a weekly finish of WR58 during that span. It’s a broken offense for the Raiders who are turning to Jarrett Stidham under center. Stidham has four career games with 10+ pass attempts– two of which he finished below 40% completion %. Since Week 13, Davante Adams has had the lowest REC% among all WRs with 20+ targets. Enter an inaccurate quarterback against the 49ers, the NFL’s 5th toughest pass DVOA matchup, and it spells a continued disaster for Adams and the rest of the Raiders offense.
Marquise “Hollywood” Brown (Arizona Cardinals)
Ever since returning from the Injured Reserve, Hollywood Brown hasn’t been the same. Brown has 30 targets in four games since Week 12 but hasn’t cracked double-digit fantasy points nor a top-36 weekly finish among WRs. To complicate matters, Kyler Murray and Colt McCoy have missed time due to injuries. Since Week 13, Hollywood ranks 44th of 48 WRs with 20+ targets in PFF RECV grade. DeAndre Hopkins ranks 42nd. Hopkins is an honorable mention on the “Sit” list as well coming off a 1 catch on 10 target performance. There are probably better FLEX options than Hollywood Brown for Week 17.
Dallas Goedert (Philadelphia Eagles)
Goedert is full-go coming off the injured reserve. He immediately played over 90% of snaps returning from injury for the Eagles in Week 16. Goedert ranks as TE2 in yards per team pass attempt, 3rd in yards after catch, 3rd in yards per route run, 4th in fantasy points per game, and still 7th among all TEs in receiving yards despite missing five games. Goedert has finished outside the top 13 of TEs in just one of his ten games this season. Fire up Dallas Goedert as a top-5 TE regardless of who is under center for the Eagles in Week 17.
Cole Kmet (Chicago Bears)
The Lions give up the 5th most fantasy points to opposing TEs. Plus, with Darnell Mooney on IR, Kmet projects to be a top target earner for the Bears. The last time the Lions and Bears squared off, Kmet exploded going 4-74-2 for 21 fantasy points, and finished as the TE1 overall in Week 10. In the highest projected game total for the week, Kmet should be a centerpiece of the passing attack against the Lions. Kmet has earned 5+ targets in six of his last seven games. Fire up Kmet as a TE1 this week.
Gerald Everett (Los Angeles Chargers)
Fantasy managers should panic over Gerald Everett’s goose egg in Week 16. Entering that game, Everett had finished as the TE19 or worse in two of his last four games despite averaging 6 targets per game during that span. Keenan Allen has been the trusted middle-of-the-field, short ADOT receiver for Justin Herbert, relegating Everett to a second read on those types of targets. Everett hasn’t scored a TD since Week 4. Also, h ranks as TE18 in yards per route run, TE19 in yards per team pass attempt, and TE23 in yards per reception.
Greg Dulcich (Denver Broncos)
Fantasy managers who found a “diamond in the rough” with Greg Dulcich should find other options. Dulcich missed practices both Wednesday and Thursday dealing with a hamstring injury that he suffered in Week 16. Dulcich was having a nice streak with three of his last four games finishing as a top-12 TE at a position desperate for fantasy points. He’s on the wrong side of questionable and can be cut from championship rosters to pick up an alternate on the waiver wire such as Cole Kmet, Tyler Higee, or David Njoku.