Before diving into specific plays, let’s start our analysis with a big picture view of the slate because the key to having success in Week 17 DFS is really understanding the motivation levels of each team and which players are most likely to benefit from any changes in motivation.
Let’s start with the teams whose starters we should be able to play with a relatively high level of confidence because their playoff hopes hinge on getting a victory:
There is little reason for any of the above teams to rest anyone in a close game because their seasons could be over with a loss.We also have some teams who are have spots locked up but should be motivated due to seeding:
Green Bay (win locks up a bye)
Tampa Bay (win locks up a first-round matchup against the NFC East champion, which is worth fighting for)
New Orleans (can get a bye if Green Bay loses and Seattle wins)
The above 13 teams are probably the safest if you are looking to pay up for star veteran players.
There are also a number of teams with nothing to play for with solid team totals who we can feel pretty good about targeting. While guys might be more likely to sit if they suffer minor injuries, there is no reason for healthy guys to rest. The following two games have some shootout potential:
Minnesota (30.5) at Detroit (23.5)
Las Vegas (26.8) at Denver (24.3)
With these motivations in mind, let’s dive into our breakdown.
Guiding DFS Tournament Principles
There are three keys to winnings large-field tournaments on FanDuel. First, we need to identify the “good chalk” — the popular plays who we want to build our lineups around. Second, we need to identify the less-popular plays who still have similar upside to the most popular players at their position. Lastly, we need to decide which young breakout candidates to target.
Every week, we will talk about these principles and identify the top targets in each category. These players will be listed below by category along with their projected popularity and then broken down in more depth in the position-by-position breakdowns in the following section.
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