When setting your weekly NFL DFS lineups, it can be just as helpful to have an idea of whom you DON’T want to include as whom you do. Every Friday we’ll highlight a few players that you might want to fade. When a player appears here, it mainly refers to fading him in cash games. If you play in a lot of large field, multi-entry tournaments, you might consider just being underweight on these players relative to the field rather than not using them at all.
Players I’m fading for Week 17 include:
Guys on teams with nothing to play for. That includes the Chiefs’ regular starting skill players, as well as the Bills. The Bills can move up to the 2-seed, but depending on how the game is going, I could see them resting guys in the second half. Consider it a risky move. It also includes the New England Patriots. They looked to have completely phoned it in on Monday Night Football, and I can’t see them seriously trying against the Jets this weekend. My focus is on players who need to win this week.
Teddy Bridgewater, Carolina Panthers
Given that the run game of the Panthers looks to be on its last legs (Rodney Smith’s) this week, you might think Bridgewater’s cheap salary is the path to a stellar lineup for Week 17. It is easier to pass on than run on the Saints, it’s true, but this is still a very lopsided matchup. New Orleans is playing for a bye, and I expect a heavy dose of Alvin Kamara again this weekend, which could limit Carolina possessions. Bridgewater also played a solid game the first time these teams met, passing for 254 yards and two touchdowns with no mistakes. However, he has fumbled three times and thrown one interception in his last two games, while only balancing that out with one rushing and one passing touchdown. The upside is non-existent here…and that goes for any Panthers’ receivers too.
Kendrick Bourne, San Francisco 49ers
Speaking of last legs, the 49ers have been struggling to stay or get healthy all season long. They will enter this weekend with only Bourne and Richie James at WR. Even though Seattle is the most tempting matchup for fantasy receivers, I fully expect the Niners to go heavy TE/RB again this week. They have nothing to play for but to spoil the Seahawks’ hopes for bye, which isn’t nothing to them, but I’d be surprised if Bourne (or James) crack 10 fantasy points. Even though they’re cheap, the range of outcomes is still too limiting for my taste.
Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers
Like Vegas bettors, who drove the line on this game from around 4 points to over 10 points in Cleveland’s favor, I have little to no faith in Mason Rudolph this week. Maybe that’s not fair to him, but on the road, against a reasonably good Browns’ defense, I think Johnson’s recent streak is going to run dry. He’s been a target hound lately for Ben Roethlisberger, but who knows if he’ll even play the whole game, or if Rudolph will even pass enough for it to matter. I’m staying away from any pricy Steelers except in deep multi-entry tournament lineups.
Editor's Note: Looking for an added edge? Dominate all season long with our DFS Toolkit. Use our Lineup Optimizer to come up with winning lineups for DraftKings, FanDuel, and Yahoo! Click here for more!
Dare Ogunbowale, Jacksonville Jaguars
With James Robinson out, Ogunbowale might catch your eye this week. He had 19 touches last week, and though his YPC of 4.5 was decent, it only amounted to about nine fantasy points. This weekend he’ll face a motivated Colts team that has been one of the best defenses in the league, so although I do often like the idea of the young player getting his chance before the season ends…not this time. If you’re on the fence, consider that James Robinson had one of his worst games of the season against these Colts in Week 1. If you’re looking for a cheap back, consider Rodney Smith, mentioned above.
Players I like, but who are expected to have high ownership in Week 17 include: Aaron Rodgers, Philip Rivers, Lamar Jackson, Davante Adams, David Montgomery, Jonathan Taylor, Alvin Kamara, Derrick Henry, Mark Andrews, Colts’ D/ST, Ravens’ D/ST. You might consider deviating away from this player pool and pivoting in large GPPs if you’re after a more unique lineup.