KNOW YOUR ENEMIES
Ordinarily, this section is devoted to thinking like the majority of your opponents while building your lineups. Knowing how a large chunk of the field is likely to construct their rosters gives you the roadmap you need to move past them in the standings.
Week 17, however, is a different animal. Several teams will look to give their starters an extra week of rest ahead of the playoffs and more are playing out the string in meaningless games, which makes playing time harder to project. The range of possible outcomes for most teams becomes wider this week as a result.
Like any other week, you’ll need a low-owned player or two in your lineup to make a deep run in most GPPs, but it’s less important to focus on roster construction in Week 17 than it is to pay careful attention to the news cycle right up until lineups lock.
More so than any other week, Week 17 can reward preparation. On that note, consider these bullets:
Familiarize yourself with the playoff scenarios so you know which teams need a win and which have more incentive to rest their starters. Players on teams in must-win situations should be prioritized along with those from teams who have been eliminated from playoff contention for weeks. In either case, their personnel rotations are unlikely to change and are therefore easier to project.
As of this writing, you’ll want to avoid regular starters on Baltimore, Buffalo, and Minnesota, each of whom can’t change their playoff seeding with a win. It also seems likely the recently-eliminated LA Rams could rest their key players. Each team’s key backups must be considered but be careful not to over-expose yourself. We may think we know how these rotations will shake out, but we don’t have weeks of data to fall back on to support those hunches. Not to mention, many backups don’t usually run with the starters for a reason -- many of them are not very good.