Why hello there LAFBNetwork Fam. Hopefully, your New Year’s Eve solo party was alive and active because we’re going to need all that good juju for your DFS lineup. Weekly fantasy is at its conclusion, so what’s the point of living anymore, am I right? Of course, I’m not right because there’s still plenty of fantasy football left. It might look a little different but it’s still fantasy all the same. In today’s read, I am going to be laying out a couple of lineups to help inspire the fantasy manager in us all to get that bread in Week 17. Maybe you didn’t land in the Championship game for your fantasy league; well in DFS each lineup you submit is a Championship game, so let’s get it!
Week 17: DFS Optimal Lineup
(QB) Baker Mayfield vs Pittsburgh Steelers – $5,500
Mayfield against the Steelers this week is a smash play because it should be a walk in the park for the most part. Sure they’re rivals but Pittsburgh beat writers have been claiming that many starters will be sitting for the Steelers.
A couple of those players sitting are T.J. Watt and Cameron Heyward. Both monsters for the Pittsburgh defense, both not suiting up for their Week 17 matchups. Lucky for Mayfield because another W clinches a playoff berth in the competitive AFC.
If that’s not enough, Baker has been averaging 26.4 fantasy points over the last four weeks. If we take out his Week 16 14.9 points his average jumps up to 30.2 fantasy points. He’s definitely a diamond lost in the rough and should be under consideration for your QB slot.
Another QB Option: Tua Tagovailoa @ Buffalo Bills – $5,100
(RB) Derrick Henry @ Houston Texans – $9,400
If we’re going for it, I want to go for it with the No. 3 RB in fantasy football. On the year Henry has been killing it for DFS and weekly fantasy football lineups averaging 19.9 points a week, but even more so, I want that Texans defense.
The Houston Texans are 31st in the league in running defense. They average 5.0 yards per attempt, as well as, 151.7 rushing yards a game. Any RB going against the Texans usually finish with some tasty numbers.
In Week 14 David Montgomery had 24.5 fantasy points, Week 15 Jonathan Taylor had 19.5 fantasy points and in Week 16 Giovani Bernard had 20.1 fantasy points. Clearly, the Texans have a soft spot in their D that opposing RBs have taken full advantage of.
(RB) Kenyan Drake @ Los Angeles Rams – $5,400
Drake might have started the year shaky, but golly has the man regained our trust. In six of the last seven games, Drake has been scoring double-digit fantasy points. And that’s with co-RB Chase Edmonds in there splitting carries. In Week 17, Edmonds is questionable to suit up in the Cardinals’ last game of the season, which means Drake will finally hold the backfield all three downs. Both the Cardinals and their opponent, the Rams, need the W to advance into the postseason so plan on a very dynamic offensive game.
Other RB Options: David Montgomery vs Green Bay Packers $7,700, David Johnson vs Tennessee Titans $6,800, Nick Chubb vs Pittsburgh Steelers $7,600
(WR) Justin Jefferson @ Detroit Lions – $7,600
Is there any question how crazy Jefferson’s rookie year has turned out to be? In 15 games Jefferson has been averaging 16.5 fantasy points, 1,267 total receiving yards, and 113 targets on the season. He’s very involved with the offense and provides a safe floor and very high ceiling.
Another WR Option: D.K. Metcalf @ San Francisco 49ers – $7,300
(WR) Michael Gallup @ New York Giants – $5,000
I’m sorry to say but it would be very surprising if Gallup could repeat his 30.1 fantasy point outcome last week against the Eagles. With that in mind, I do still believe that Gallup has been an asset these past two months for the Dallas Cowboys and Andy Dalton.
In eight weeks of football Gallup has seen 62 targets and 36 receptions. If that doesn’t impress you, Gallup has also posted 102.3 fantasy points in those eight weeks. Sure that includes the 30.1 games but if it didn’t, he would still be averaging over 10 points a game.
Another WR Option: Mike Williams @ Kansas City Chiefs $5,000
(WR) Rashard Higgins vs Pittsburgh Steelers – $4,500
Not only does Higgins fit in my lineup for the QB/WR stack, but he also fits in my lineup because of his targets and fantasy points. In three weeks Higgins has had 24 targets and totaled 51.9 fantasy points. Of course, this is not accounting for Week 16 because of the Browns’ Covid-19 WR drama, but from Week 13–15 Higgins has been lighting it up for the Browns. If you’re looking for a steal, Higgins is your guy.
Another WR Option: Zach Pascal vs Jacksonville Jaguars – $4,200
(TE) Noah Fant vs Las Vegas Raiders – $4,400
How is Fant only $4,400 on DraftKings? I have no idea, but I will take that deal all day. Fant’s season as a whole has been very up and down, mainly for PPR, if you had Fant in standard leagues then you have felt the pain. Luckily Draftkings runs the PPR format so his 20 targets and 14 receptions in two weeks looks a whole lot better. Either way, he’s the only receiving asset that Drew Lock can lock onto so grab him while his cash value is so low.
Another TE Option: Mike Gesicki @ Buffalo Bills – $4,200
(FLEX) Curtis Samuel vs New Orleans Saints – $5,300
Since Week 5, Samuel has scored less than 11.4 fantasy points just two times. Other than those two outputs Samuel has seen point totals like 21.4 points Week 8, 26.8 points Week 9, 21.4 points again in Week 11, and 20.8 fantasy points Week 16. He’s been a constant force for the Carolina offense and part of their three-headed monster of a WR corps. With all the talent you might think Samuel has slid in the WR rankings as a whole but Carolina has been keeping all their WRs fantasy relevant. On the year Samuel has 193 fantasy points and 26th among the WRs in the league.
Other FLEX Options: Wayne Gallman Jr. vs Dallas Cowboys – $5,300, Russell Gage @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers – $5,100, Robert Tonyan @ Chicago Bears – $5,000,
(DST) Cowboys @ New York Giants – $2,900
If there’s something to hope for in the New Year it would have to be that the NFC East berths a Cinderella story into the playoffs. One of these teams is going to be less than .500 and with a W in Week 17, it would send them to the post-season.
This is going to be one of those games that’s going to require both teams to use everything they have to advance and if we’re matching apples to apples and oranges to oranges, I’m not too sure the Giants will be able to keep up. Ezekiel Elliott is going to be a full participant. There’s been solid game-play with the receivers and Dalton.
It just feels like Dallas has too much for the Giants to overcome and that’s only their offensive front. The Giants have been a horror show when it comes to moving the ball and defenses have been aggressive getting after Daniel Jones.
Another DST Option: Cardinals @ Los Angeles Rams – $2,800
Alright so if you feel a little uncomfortable using most of your coin on Henry, have no fear, so do I! If you took him out you could possibly Montgomery and Aaron Jones or J.K. Dobbins, Taylor, and replace the FLEX with Jeff Wilson Jr.
Let’s say you do the easy flip and Henry into Nick Chubb. That would clear up $1,800 on your salary which could turn Jefferson into Davante Adams. Or Gallup into Chris Godwin. Or even Higgins into Corey Davis.