News & Analysis

Week 17 DFS locks of the week

Dec 10, 2017; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Keelan Cole (84) catches a pass for a touchdown during the second half against the Seattle Seahawks at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

It’s the final week of the regular season, and it’s the strangest week in DFS. Stars get sidelined as teams prep for the playoffs, and some strange names end up on winning DFS rosters as a result.

Here’s the list of players you can lock into your Week 17 DFS lineups.

Note: There’s always a case to be made for playing any player in tournaments. This list of “locks” is cash game focused, but I typically like these players across all contest types.


Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions

Stafford will supposedly play the whole game, which is good news for fantasy owners, as he has a home date with the 32nd-ranked Packers pass defense. Green Bay has given up 21.5 fantasy PPG to opposing quarterbacks over the past five weeks.

Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

A cheap option for those looking to save at quarterback, Winston’s on-field play hasn’t mirrored his (relative) fantasy success. Winston’s 18.0 DraftKings fantasy points per game represents a 3.1x return on value from his $5,800 price tag, putting him firmly in play for cash games.

Jacoby Brissett, Indianapolis Colts

Brissett has performed well at home when facing an exploitable secondary. This week, he gets the Texans, who have given up the third-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this year. Brissett tagged them for 308 yards, two scores and no interceptions back in Week 9.

Running backs

LeSean McCoy, Buffalo Bills

Typically a better play at home, McCoy is still a lock on the road this week against the Dolphins, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this year. Miami has also given up 92 receptions to opposing backs, tied for fourth-most in the NFL. The Bills still have a potential playoff spot on the line, so McCoy’s workload shouldn’t be in jeopardy.

Kenyan Drake, Miami Dolphins

Drake should bounce back at home against the division rival Bills, who have ceded the most points to enemy backs this year. The Dolphins used Drake to exploit the Bills through the air during their Week 15 date, when Drake saw 11 targets.

Jamaal Williams, Green Bay Packers

Williams has put together two clunkers, but those have been games against the Panthers and Vikings. Things get easier in Week 17 against the Lions, who have the No. 30 run defense and have given up the second-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this year. Williams is still cheap to boot.

Carlos Hyde, San Francisco 49ers

Hyde is only $4,900 on DraftKings, but he has seen between 18 and 24 touches in two straight games, which is phenomenal volume for a player in that price range. The Rams — San Francisco’s Week 17 opponent — are locked in as either the No. 3 or No. 4 seed, so we could see some starters rested. Los Angeles has also given up the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this year.

Wide receivers

DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans

Hopkins has at least 70 yards or a touchdown in every game this year. Not “every game since…” — literally every game. The Colts have also given up the 10th-most fantasy points to opposing wideouts this year.

Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints

Thomas has been a mini version of Hopkins in terms of consistency, with at least 60 yards and or a touchdown in all but three games this year. Thomas has a cake Week 17 matchup against the Buccaneers, who have given up the most fantasy points to opposing receivers this year.

Keelan Cole, Jacksonville Jaguars

I don’t love repeating locks in back-to-back weeks, but Cole fits the bill again. He’s still too cheap for his usage and outage. Cole has 99-plus yards in three straight games, he has a touchdown in three of his past four, and he’s coming off a ridiculous 13-target game in Week 16. The Titans have given up the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing receivers this year.

Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions

For this price and matchup, it’s hard to beat Golladay this week. The Packers have given up the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing wideouts this year, while Golladay has seen his target total rise each game over the past month: 3, 4, 5, 8. Will he a be a top-10 wideout on the week? Probably not. But when factoring in his price (only $3,300 on DraftKings), he’s primed to return solid value for DFSers.

Tight ends

Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs

I love Kelce against the Broncos, who have given up the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this year. Kelce crushed the Broncos with a 7-133-1 line on 10 targets in Week 8 — his best game of the season.

Vance McDonald, Pittsburgh Steelers

McDonald has quietly been a decent receiving tight end for Pittsburgh when healthy. He has produced back-to-back games with 4-52-0 receiving lines — and on DraftKings, he’s $1,300 cheaper than teammate Jesse James. The Browns have given up the third-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this year, priming McDonald to return huge value against his cheap price.

Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts

Doyle tagged the Texans for an 8-63-0 line against the Texans in Week 9, which is obviously a decent line (14.3 points) in full-point PPR formats. The Texans have given up the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends this year.

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