5 Players With Tough Week 17 Matchups
Throughout this season, this column has focused on whether or not to start your studs depending on their specific matchup. Week 17 is a different animal altogether, so I’m just going to find players who may be in positions to let you down this week based on opponent and contest if you’re still playing for something.
Let’s get right to it.
Week 17 Risky Plays
Kirk Cousins (Vikings) vs. Bears
Cousins’ play has been meh recently, not topping 15 fantasy points in three straight contests and his offensive line hasn’t done him any favors, either. The Bears have played opposing quarterbacks pretty tight in 2019, ranking 10th in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA) to the position through the first 16 weeks.
Minnesota may also opt to sit their signal-caller at some point in the game, regardless of outcome, due to their sixth-seed lock in the NFC. I’d find another quarterback to bank on this week.
David Montgomery (Bears) @ Vikings
Despite averaging 16.3 touches over his past seven games, Montgomery only eclipsed 6.6 PPR points once in that time frame. Even though the Vikings may rest some of their defenders at some point in this game, trusting the rookie back on the road is a tough one for me to justify.
Marshawn Lynch (Seahawks) vs. 49ers
You may be tempted and excited to fire up Lynch in his return to Seattle this week, but you probably shouldn’t. He missed most of last season due to injury with the Raiders, and we have no idea how football ready he really is.
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has already expressed that they’ll be relying heavily on Travis Homer to carry the load in the backfield so if he’s available, the rookie could be a decent RB2 in Week 17. Be warned though, the 49ers rank second against the run and both teams are playing for postseason positioning.
DeVante Parker (Dolphins) @ Patriots
Parker has been a wonderful surprise this season for those who drafted or grabbed him off the waiver wire. This week though, he could struggle in New England and sink your chances of a title. The Patriots rank second in aFPA to wideouts and have only surrendered four touchdowns to the position all season.
Parker himself was held to zero catches on seven targets when these two teams met back in Week 2, which isn’t exactly encouraging. Despite his WR1 status in 2019, expectations need to be lowered significantly for Parker’s output this week.
Josh Allen (Bills) vs. Jets
After losing to the Patriots in Week 16, the Bills are locked in as the fifth seed in the AFC without a way to change their positioning. The Buffalo coaching staff claims their starters will play, but just how long is still up for debate. Despite a great on-paper matchup against the Jets, starting Allen is just too risky with your season on the line.