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Fantasy Football: Who to start and sit in NFL Week 17

Who you should play in place of the players who are resting in Week 17.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Indianapolis Colts Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Well it is Week 17.

Unless you are here for sort of weekly fantasy league, I have to tell you you need to change this for your league next year. Having a championship fantasy game in Week 17 is just down right wrong.

For instance, there are several teams who are happy to rest their players in the final week of the season with their playoff destiny already decided. This means players like Todd Gurley and Le’Veon Bell probably aren’t going to play much if at all in Week 17. These are players that likely led their teams to the championship in the first place.

I hate to make the argument that this creates an unrealistic situation, because all of fantasy football is pretty much based around this unrealistic concept.

However, you will never see a real NFL team rest a star player in the Super Bowl. It is just frustrating to owners who feel like they got screwed because of a dumb rule.

Must starts

Kenyan Drake (Dolphins RB): Drake will be facing off against the Bills defense that has really struggled to slow down any running backs for most of the season. Drake provides that added dimension of getting involved in the pass game as well, and he will likely be trying to prove he deserves to be the starter for the Dolphins next season as well.

T.Y. Hilton (Colts WR): I have been fairly hard on Hilton this year, but he needs to be in your lineup this week. He had 100 yards receiving against the Colts last week, and the last time these two teams met he went off for 175 yards and two touchdowns.

Favorable matchups

Alex Collins (Ravens RB): Collins has really come on for the Ravens this season. He is coming off a rough couple of weeks though where he has struggled to get going, but the Ravens are good about feeding him the ball. He has over 15 touches in each of the last three games, and the Bengals have struggled to stop opposing running backs lately this season.

Michael Thomas (Saints WR): Thomas is dealing with a little bit of a hamstring injury, but he played through it last week. The Saints are also trying to win to secure the NFC South and get the home game in the first round of the playoffs. The Bucs have had a terrible pass defense all season, so you need to make sure Thomas in in your lineup this week.

Jacoby Brissett (Colts QB): Brissett has had some really rough matchups lately, but playing against the Texans this week means he is a great plug and start player. So if you were running with a quarterback like Jared Goff, you should pick up Brissett.

Good but not great

Malcom Brown (Rams RB): This is more a case of availability over matchup. Odds are you don’t have many choices to replace Gurley if you own him, so the next best thing is picking up his backup. The 49ers have allowed 20 points per game to opposing running backs, according to Fantasy Pros, so while Brown is a relative unknown he does have a decent opportunity of putting up a good game.

Julio Jones (Falcons WR): Jones went off last week, but he has been extremely inconsistent this season from a fantasy perspective. It is hard to imagine him having a terrible game against the Panthers secondary that he went over 100 yards against last time they played, but he hasn’t played well enough for us to expect him to exploit this matchup like he should.

Unfavorable matchups

Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen (Bears RBs): So the Vikings don’t have a lot to play for. Even if they lose they will probably end up with their bye week, but it seems they will air on the side of caution and win this game. The Vikings absolutely crush opposing running backs, and this offense is so one dimensional the Vikings will likely be happy to sell out to stop these running backs.

A.J. Green (Bengals WR): I’m not saying sit Green, but the Ravens are the second stingiest passing defense in the league in fantasy. You should expect a lot of volume going towards Green, but don’t expect him to carry you to a championship.

Just sit them

Derrick Henry (Titans RBs): The Jaguars aren’t resting their starters this week, and they have a chance to keep the Titans out of the playoffs by beating them. Henry would be facing one of the toughest run defense in the NFL this season that is looking for revenge after getting embarrassed last week.

Corey Davis (Titans WR): Davis had a fairly good outing last week, but he will be matched up against Jalen Ramsey this week, so it is best to just leave him on your bench. There isn’t much more to say about that.