Week 17 NFL DFS Stacking Advice (2020 Fantasy Football)
Hopefully, you were able to bring home some fantasy titles for this wild 2020 season. While this NFL year has already been strange, Week 17 is sure to have plenty of surprises.
Big names like Patrick Mahomes, Ben Roethlisberger, and Dalvin Cook are already ruled out for the final week of the season. We expect more players to be rested or not play the entire game in Week 17 as teams prepare for the postseason or look toward the future.
This article is an early look at some potential stacks to implement in DFS lineups for Week 17. However, it will be more important than ever to track the news and determine which players will or will not play the full game for this last week of the season.
When looking at an NFL DFS slate, I usually begin with these two steps:
- Examining Implied Team Totals and Game Over/Unders
- Identifying Teams to Target and Possible Stacks
Each week, I will share my findings with you after I have completed these first two steps. Throughout this piece, I will reference implied team totals, winning probabilities, and game over/unders that are acquired from our consensus odds collected over at BettingPros.
Games/Teams to Target
- Tennessee at Houston (Over/Under 56.0)
- Tennessee Team Total: 31.75
- Houston Team Total: 24.25
- Minnesota at Detroit (Over/Under 54.5)
- Minnesota Team Total: 30.5
- Detroit Team Total: 24.0
- Green Bay at Chicago (Over/Under 52.0)
- Green Bay Team Total: 28.75
- Chicago Team Total: 23.25
- Jacksonville at Indianapolis (Over/Under 49.5)
- Indianapolis Team Total: 31.75
- Jacksonville Team Total: 17.75
DFS Stacks to Target
All salaries are from FanDuel, but these stacks can be utilized on DraftKings as well.
Baker Mayfield (QB – CLE): $7,000 / Rashard Higgins (WR – CLE): $5,600
This stack was featured in the Week 16 article, but we were not able to implement it after the entire starting WR group for the Browns was placed on the COVID-19 list. The Browns’ passing game struggled as a result, and they were unable to defeat the New York Jets who stifled the run.
After the down performance from Mayfield, I do not expect many DFS players to be on the Browns QB. In addition, the matchup with Pittsburgh looks scary on paper. However, the Steelers have already announced that QB Ben Roethlisberger will miss the game, so we can expect plenty of defensive players to be rested as well. Mayfield has played excellent football over the last month, and I expect him to have a ceiling game in what is a must-win for the Browns’ playoff chances.
Mayfield has already recorded high fantasy point outings in some matchups, including 31 FanDuel fantasy points against Baltimore and 29 points against Tennessee. In a game that could alter the direction of the franchise, I expect Baker to shine when his pass-catchers return to action.
While WR Jarvis Landry ($6,700) has also been solid over the last month, we can save some salary and go with the lesser-known Higgins for our contrarian stack. The fifth-year WR out of Colorado State has stepped into a larger role following the injury to WR Odell Beckham Jr. Higgins has seen an average of eight targets over his past three games, hauling in two touchdowns and racking up 239 receiving yards over that span. He has the ability to break a big play or two against this Steelers defense while continuing to see steady volume.
Phillip Rivers (QB – IND): $7,300 / T.Y. Hilton (WR – CLE): $6,300
Despite coming in with a 10-5 record, the Colts find themselves in a must-win situation in order to have a chance of making the playoffs. As a result, I expect the Colts to do everything possible to avoid handing Jacksonville its second win of the season.
While RB Jonathan Taylor ($8,400) will undoubtedly be a popular play against this porous Jacksonville defense, we can be contrarian by rostering the Indianapolis passing game. Rivers’ 2020 fantasy season can best be described as “solid”, as much of Indianapolis’ scoring has come on the ground. However, Rivers does have a few games with 3 passing touchdowns, and the Colts are expected to score plenty with their implied team total of 31.75, tied for the highest of the week.
Jacksonville has allowed the third-most points to the QB position and is also a top-ten matchup for opposing WRs. Hilton has averaged nearly eight targets per game over his last four, and he is always a threat for a big play or two. He has failed to reach the end zone in his past two games, but he should have little trouble getting open against Jacksonville’s young defense.
With rookie RB James Robinson shelved for the final week of the season, bring-back options on Jacksonville are limited. While WR D.J. Chark ($6,000) always has the potential for a TD, the Indianapolis defense provides plenty of resistance and will do everything it can to avoid a repeat of Week 1.
Ryan Tannehill (QB – TEN): $8,200 / Corey Davis (WR – TEN): $7,200
Though they currently sit in a playoff position, a win against Houston would lock up the AFC South division for the playoffs. In keeping with the theme of rostering players on teams with motivation to win, the Titans find themselves in a great spot against a favorable matchup.
The Texans have struggled to stop teams both on the ground and through the air. RB Derrick Henry ($10,200) will be difficult to fade in cash games, but we can get differentiation in tournaments by rostering the Tennesee passing game instead. Tannehill and his top two WRs had their worst game of the season against a strong Packers pass defense that dared the Titans to beat them without Henry.
After that flop in a national broadcast of Sunday Night Football, I expect a lot of DFS owners to be off the Titans other than Derrick Henry. This creates a great opportunity to go right back to the passing game. Tannehill has had a terrific season, and he had just posted a 37 FanDuel fantasy point outing against Detroit before a disappointing day against Green Bay. Tannehill has flashed his own mobility recently, including three rushing touchdowns over his past two games.
Davis has been boom or bust over the last month, which should not scare us away in GPP formats. His boom games have carried tournament-winning scores, including a 29.7 FanDuel fantasy point outing against Cleveland and 22.8 points against Cincinnati. Davis is always a threat for a big play, and he just might get it against a Houston team that is allowing the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers on the season.
Deshaun Watson has had a strong close to his 2020 season, which opens up the possibility of bringing it back with one of his receiving options for this game that features the highest over/under of the slate at 56 points. WR Brandin Cooks ($7,300) is coming off a game in which he hauled in seven of ten targets for 141 yards and a TD against Cincinnati. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers exposed the holes in the Tennessee secondary, and Watson should also have no issue getting the ball to Cooks in space.
Beyond our daily fantasy football content, be sure to check out our Daily Fantasy Football Tools. From our Value Plays – which allows you to identify players who are projected to outperform their salaries – to our DFS Cheat Sheets – that helps you get a quick read on the day’s players – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.