NFL Week 17: Daily Fantasy Preview and Advice

Image credit: Erin Costa

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the end of the 2016/2017 NFL regular season is upon us. NFL Week 17 gets underway this Sunday with a 16-game slate that will finalize the postseason picture. Some teams will continue for at least another week; others will take the long plane ride home as their Super Bowl LI dreams go up in smoke.

But, all that is in the future. Right now, we still have a full slate of games to watch and lineups to build. The big daily fantasy sites are hosting another big slate of guaranteed contests and cash games as we head into Week 17.

Biggest NFL Week 17 Fantasy Contests

This will be the last normal week with a full slate of games so naturally we’re recommending you give the regular season one last good shot. We’ll still have postseason fantasy contests to look forward to next week, but Week 17 is the last time you’ll get to play in contests with a whole slate of games like you’re used to.

FanDuel and DraftKings each have at least one tournament with $1,000,000 or more in guaranteed prizes. FanDuel has the greatest variety of contests and the most active players, but DraftKings is holding the biggest tournament of the week. Here’s what we have on offer at both.

FanDuel: $1.1M Sunday Million

  • Entry: $25
  • First Place: $200,000
  • Total Entries: 51,764
  • Places Paid: 10,655
  • Enter Now:

FanDuel: $700K Sunday NFL Sling TV Rush

  • Entry: $5
  • First Place: $100,000
  • Total Entries: 164,705
  • Places Paid: 32,860
  • Enter Now:

FanDuel: $500K Sunday Monster

  • Entry: $300
  • First Place: $100,000
  • Total Entries: 1,867
  • Places Paid: 334
  • Enter Now:

DraftKings: $4M Fantasy Millionaire Championship

  • Entry: $20
  • First Place: $1,000,000
  • Total Entries: 231.2K
  • Places Paid: 63,325
  • Enter Now:

DraftKings: $1.75M Wildcat Championship

  • Entry: $333
  • First Place: $250,000
  • Total Entries: 5,839
  • Places Paid: 1,179
  • Enter Now:

DraftKings: $1.1M Play-Action

  • Entry: $3
  • First Place: $50,000
  • Total Entries: 431.3K
  • Placed Paid: 119,450
  • Enter Now:

DraftKings: $400K Thunderdome

  • Entry: $5,300
  • First Place: $100,000
  • Total Entries: 80
  • Places Paid: 17
  • Enter Now:

Week 17 Daily Fantasy NFL Games to Watch

Week 17 is the most challenging and misleading week of the season for daily fantasy football, but it is also ripe with opportunity. Some teams will be resting their starters or giving them light play, which will kill you if you happen to have those players included in your lineup. Others will be playing like their lives depend on it as they risk missing out on the postseason.

Also keep in mind that this applies to defenses as well. The defensive ranking stats will be misleading for certain teams if they’re resting up their starters in anticipation of the postseason action. This will create matchups for certain offensive players that are better than they look on paper.

Information like this is critical in Week 17 fantasy contests, but NFL coaches aren’t exactly eager to go around blabbing about their plans at this crucial juncture in the season. However, we can use a little common sense to develop a broad picture of what’s likely and then drill down from there.

Today, we’ll be looking at the games that matter the most in Week 17.

We are skipping over the “meaningless” games today, but do not totally overlook players in those games either. Just because a few starters may be resting does not mean you can’t find some nice pickups in those other games.

With the intensity lowered a notch in games that have no postseason implications, you will still see some players giving it a serious effort to boost their career outlooks in games where the defense may not be playing as tight. There can also be some great value to be found in inexpensive second-stringers who may be asked to shoulder a bigger share of the workload.

Keeping up to date with news from around the NFL takes up even more importance heading into Week 17. Don’t slack now that we’re down to the last week of the regular season. Every bit of information you can get regarding injuries, who will rest and who will play hard through to the very end will prove useful throughout the week.

That being said, there are obvious reasons to favor players who have something to play for. If a team’s playoff chances are on the line or there are seeding implications, you can expect the players on that team to give a 100% effort.

New England Patriots @ Miami Dolphins

The New England Patriots should play their starters with the #1 seed in the AFC on the line. A Patriots win on Sunday will lock the #1 seed in the AFC. If they lose this game and Oakland beats Denver, the Raiders will get the #1 seed.

The Miami Dolphins also say they’re planning to start their number one players for Sunday’s game. However, the Dolphins have already clinched a sixth-seed spot and the best they could do is improve to the fifth-seed if they beat the Patriots and the Chiefs lose to the Chargers. The Dolphins may also be motivated to get this win so they can play Tom Savage and the Texans rather than Big Ben and the Steelers in round one of the playoffs.

New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta Falcons

The Saints are eliminated and have nothing to play for, but Drew Brees and co. did put up an admirable performance last year in Week 17 after they had already been eliminated. It seems likely the Saints will continue to play hard in their last game of the season.

Atlanta can get a first round bye if they beat the Saints and should play hard. Matt Ryan has had an incredible season and looks like an attractive pick that matches well against New Orleans at home. Coach Dan Quinn says they are going to “battle for it in every way that we can against New Orleans.”

New York Giants @ Washington Redskins

The New York Giants have locked down the #5 seed in the NFC and have no reason to win this game. Eli Manning wants to play, of course, but it’s hard to imagine the Giants wanting to risk his health in a game that has no bearing on the postseason. Head coach Ben McAdoo is expected to speak more on the issue Wednesday afternoon, so be on the lookout for that news.

The Washington Redskins will be playing this game to win. If they beat the Giants, they will clinch a wild card spot as long as the Lions and Packers game doesn’t end in a tie.

Oakland Raiders @ Denver Broncos

The Oakland Raiders have quite a bit riding on this game. The Raiders already have a postseason spot reserved, but a win in Denver would give them the AFC West title and give backup quarterback Matt McGloin a huge confidence boost going into the postseason. We expect every Raider to be playing this game hard.

The Denver Broncos have been eliminated and have nothing left to play for this season. They might even start rookie quarterback Paxton Lynch just to get another look at him.

Kansas City Chiefs @ San Diego Chargers

The Kansas City Chiefs will be fired up and ready to play hard on Sunday. A win over the Chargers combined with an Oakland loss in Denver will give the Chiefs the AFC West title and the #2 seed in the AFC.

The San Diego Chargers have been eliminated and this will be their last game of the season. It may even be their last game in San Diego, period. The Chargers will want to put on a good show for the fans just in case this is the last time they ever play in San Diego, but the team went through that whole emotional ordeal at the end of last year so this year’s repeat probably won’t feel as special.

Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco 49ers

Seattle has already clinched the division, but another win on Sunday combined with a Falcons loss or tie will give the Seahawks the #2 seed and a first round bye. Seattle does not have a very bad worst case scenario, however, so they may decide to ease up a bit if this game gets super lopsided.

San Francisco’s season will be over Sunday evening no matter what happens against the Seahawks. As a team, they don’t have a whole lot to play for other than the pleasure of playing spoiler to the Seahawks. Certain quarterbacks and head coaches would probably like to win this game for job security reasons as well.

Green Bay Packers @ Detroit Lions

This is the biggest game of the day with the highest stakes of the week. The winning team will take the NFC North title. The losing team might not even have a postseason. This is about as all-or-nothing as it gets in the NFL regular season so both teams have plenty of reason play hard.