Daily Fantasy Football Sleepers for NFL Week 17 (2020)
Week 17 is going to be a weird one in the NFL. That’s probably true for week 17 every year, though, as elite teams rest guys, and bad teams are as unpredictable as ever.
I can really only speak for week 17 in the 2020 NFL season, though, and early indications are there will be plenty of value to work with.
That should translate to the betting side of things, too. Just take a look at my week 17 NFL upset picks to see for yourself.
Want to load up on the obvious studs in NFL DFS, though? You will have the opportunity to do so.
Which NFL DFS sleepers for week 17 make the most sense for your lineups, though? Join me as I break down some of my favorites.
Quarterback NFL DFS Sleepers for Week 17
- Baker Mayfield – Browns ($5.5k)
- C.J. Beathard – 49ers ($5.2k)
- John Wolford – Rams ($4.9k)
There is potentially going to be a lot more value than this, as Jarrett Stidham could get the Patriots’ starting quarterback gig for week 17, among other things. Chad Henne could also be appealing in the event he starts with KC resting guys.
Still, I’ll start off with Baker Mayfield, who has a golden opportunity against a Steelers team set to rest its key players. Mayfield and his Browns are still playing for a playoff spot, so he could be a threat to pop off here.
I also don’t hate Beathard. He tossed three touchdowns a week ago, and his matchup with the Seahawks may demand he take it to the air even more. He’s got nothing to lose here, and pairing him with another 49ers sleeper could have some appeal.
There’s also John Wolford, who should get the nod for the Rams, with Jared Goff unlikely to play.
Rams’ QB Jared Goff underwent surgery today on his broken right thumb in LA and is unlikely to play Sunday vs. Arizona, sources tell ESPN. If he can’t play Sunday, Goff could return for the playoffs if Rams advance there.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 29, 2020
John Wolford is Goff’s backup and now in line to start.
Wolford looked good in the short-lived AAF, but he’s never thrown an NFL pass. He has the weapons and matchup to pay off this cheap price tag, however.
Week 17 Running Back Sleeper Picks
- Darrel Williams – Chiefs ($4.8k)
- Dare Ogunbowale – Jaguars ($4.5k)
- Malcolm Brown – Rams ($4.3k)
Running back will not be the spot to save money in week 17. You either want to free up salary for the top studs, or you’ll want the guys priced just below them.
That said, there is a good argument for one cheap running back being used, and Darrel Williams may get things going. He got a decent amount of work last week, and with KC resting its starters, it’ll likely either be him or Darwin Thompson who have a chance at going off in week 17.
James Robinson missed week 16 with an ankle issue, and it may make sense for the Jags to just sit him out again to close out the year. If so, Dare Ogunbowale (78 yards on 17 touches last week) could see a lot of work against the Colts.
Perhaps my favorite cheap running back, of course, is Malcolm Brown. He’s set up for a massive load, as Cam Akers is still an unknown, and Darrell Henderson also won’t play this week.
Brown is in an awkward spot, as he’s likely going to be without his starting quarterback in what amounts to a playoff game with the Cardinals. He’s dirt cheap and will be needed if the Rams have any thoughts of winning, however.
Wide Receiver NFL DFS Values for Week 17
- John Brown – Bills ($3.6k)
- James Washington – Steelers ($3.5k)
- Richie James – 49ers ($3.1k)
The Bills elected not to activate John Brown and use him in week 16, so you’ll definitely want to keep tabs on his status for the final week of the regular season.
If the speedster is ready to go, though, he’s way too cheap to ignore.
Ditto for James Washington, who could see a huge role on Sunday if the Steelers bench some key players. News broke that Ben Roethlisberger won’t start, so it’s entirely possible that stretches to the wide receiver group in Pittsburgh.
Washington knows Mason Rudolph well, and he’s flashed big-play upside in 2020, so he’s a fantastic dart if he has a nice role.
The same can be said for Richie James, who may benefit from a big role in week 17. He already played about 90% of the offensive snaps last week, but he may see a bit more action come his way now than Brandon Aiyuk has been ruled out.
#49ers WR Brandon Aiyuk suffered a high ankle sprain in Saturday's game and OT Trent Williams suffered a sprained elbow. They both won't play in the season finale vs. Seattle.— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) December 28, 2020
Most will recall James’ amazing performance earlier this year against the Packers (36 fantasy points). I doubt he does that here, but in a fun spoiler game against Seattle, he could still pop off a bit and crush this price tag.
Week 17 NFL DFS Sleepers at Tight End
- Jonnu Smith – Titans ($3.8k)
- Hayden Hurst – Falcons ($3.7k)
- Jimmy Graham – Bears ($3.6k)
Travis Kelce is a rest candidate this week. You still could have three very good tight end options to work with up top, but it is arguable that punting the position is the way to go, given all the stud running backs available.
If you go that route, first consider Jonnu Smith, who has awoken lately with 10+ fantasy points in three of his last four games. He has a role again, and in week 17, he faces a bad Texans defense that just gave up 37 points to the Bengals of all teams.
Tennessee’s best path to a win remains their running game, so I don’t mind if you turn to Hayden Hurst instead. Atlanta will likely keep holding a banged-up Julio Jones out, which should prop Hurst up again this week.
He has a palatable matchup with the Bucs, who allowed him to score two weeks ago. Almost certainly playing from behind all game, Hurst is a solid PPR option in this game.
I don’t really love Graham, but he’s cheap, has a chance at some revenge, and somehow keeps scoring touchdowns. He has eight on the year, and something tells me he’s going to get at least one in a huge game against his former team.
Best Defense Sleepers for Week 17 NFL DFS
- Minnesota Vikings ($2.6k)
- New York Jets ($2.3k)
- Tennessee Titans ($2.2k)
This is probably going to be a good week to save cash when looking for a team defense. I think Seattle at $3k is totally fine and they’re among my top NFL DFS picks for week 17, but punting is very much on the table.
You can start that conversation with Minnesota, who are likely preparing for a Detroit Lions backup quarterback. Mike Zimmer will be the first to tell you that his defense stinks, but it’s still a great spot if Matthew Stafford is out.
I also don’t hate the Jets. They’re suddenly playing really well, and in week 17, they will go for win number three in a row. 2020, I tell ya.
Even so, the Jets will face a Patriots offense that has been bad all year, and it may even bench Cam Newton. For better or worse, it makes the cheap Jets surprisingly appealing.
The Titans are probably my preferred punt at defense, though. Tennessee is a big favorite against the lowly Jags, and I have them covering in my week 17 NFL betting locks.
Tennessee needs to win just to make the playoffs, and I think they coast. Pairing them with Derrick Henry makes a ton of sense, too.
It is Tuesday as I write this, so by no means should this serve as a final batch of week 17 NFL DFS sleepers. This should be a terrific starting point, and most of these plays (if not all of them) will still be perfectly viable.
However, some guys still need to be officially activated, ruled out, or elevated on their respective depth charts.
Depending on what news still comes out, these daily fantasy football sleepers could look great, and others could also pop up.
It’s important to start figuring out your player pool early in the week, but you also want to keep tabs on all of the news and how NFL odds move throughout the week. You can take a look at my early week 17 NFL betting odds and compare to current pricing to see just how much lines really do shift, too.
This gets you going from a value perspective for week 17 NFL DFS, but there’s more to learn. Head on over to our NFL picks section for complete breakdowns and predictions for every NFL game this week.