Johnny's Cash Game Plays: Week 17

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Johnny's Cash Game Plays: Week 17

Note: For now, especially with all the covid news, I’m going to be a little more concise and spend more time finding quality picks, as opposed to writing about them.

Ironically, it was our QB1 for the week in Matthew Stafford (QB25) destroying hopes and dreams and offering a serious damper on the rest of the QB recommendations last week, which were mostly good with Joe Burrow (QB1), Josh Johnson (QB7), Justin Herbert (QB9) doing well and low-end options Carson Wentz (QB11) and Nick Foles (QB13) delivering. Jalen Hurts (QB14) wasn’t awful, but Matt Ryan (QB21) was a cheap option who fell flat.

The RB calls included Justin Jackson (RB1), Damien Harris (RB4), David Montgomery (RB7), Ronald Jones (RB12), and Alexander Mattison (RB13), who were strong producers.

Javonte Williams (RB27) scored, but he got pinched by their bad offense and

Josh Jacobs (RB22) was only okay. Clyde Edwards Helaire (RB26) also scored, but he got hurt early, but not as early as James Robinson (RB78).

At WR, I missed out on the homeruns of the week, but I had mostly all solid recommendations/values with Jaylen Waddle (WR8), Amari Cooper (WR10), Antonio Brown (WR12), Cooper Kupp (WR11), Ja’Marr Chase (WR14), Michael Pittman (WR19), and Joshua Palmer (WR22). Tyler Lockett (WR70) was a buzzkill, and while cheap, Emmanuel Sanders (WR83) got none of the action that went to Isaiah Mckenzie.

TE was a little bit of a mixed bag, as usual, but we had Mark Andrews (TE1), Kyle Pitts (TE4), and Zach Ertz (TE5) in there, and some decent low-end producers in Cole Kmet (TE16), James O'Shaughnessy (TE17), and CJ Uzomah (TE18), who just missed a TD and a top-10 finish. Unfortunately, Dallas Goedert (TE29) and Mike Gesicki (TE28) bombed.

It was a pretty good week overall, and the last 3-4 weeks have been solid, so I will look to stay hot, or at least pretty damn warm.

Quarterbacks

Note: I’m ranking them in order of my favorite plays, mainly for cash games.

Trey Lance (SF, vs. — $4800 DK, $6400 FD) — He’s a top-3 value on both sites. Lance has reportedly improved this fall/winter while running the taxi squad offense, and when he takes to the field this week, he’ll have his full complement of weapons. I think the 49ers will run the ball well and open things up nicely for Lance, who in his lone start early in the season took off and ran a whopping 16 times for 89 rushing yards. All we need from him in one passing TD, and we’re probably good for 15+ FP.

Tyler Huntley (Bal, vs. LAR — $5600 DK) — He’s only the 15th-best value on FD, so I won’t mess with that, but he’s the third-best value on DK, which is worth a shot. I also won’t mess with Huntley if Lamar Jackson is active, obviously. But if Lamar is out, I can absolutely back Huntley as a solid play with only 16 FP needed to deliver. Between his rushing, MANDREWS, and Rashod Bateman, Huntley should be fine.

Jalen Hurts (Phi, vs. WFT — $6600 DK, $7900 FD) — He’s a top-5 value on both sites. I incorrectly listed Hurts here last week, but he posted only 2/7 rushing with no designed runs. We do not think that will be the case this week, and he practiced fully Thursday and Friday, so his ankle is feeling better. Hurts went off with 296/1 passing and 8/38/2 rushing for 29.6 FP just two weeks ago, and in between the FT got crushed by Dallas for 440/5 passing last week. TFT won’t have top corner William Jackson, which bodes well for DeVonta Smith, and Dallas Goedert went nuts in this matchup two weeks ago.

Dak Prescott (Dal, vs. Ari — $6700 DK, $7400 FD) — He’s a top-5 value on both sites. Prescott was a different guy last week, dropping 330 yards (8.5 YPA) and 4 TDs on TFT and now he gets another plus matchup in Dallas. The Cardinals have given up multiple TD passes in four straight games, and they will be down one of their top corners in Marco Wilson. I like Dak to do a lot of damage again this week.

Mac Jones (NE, vs. Jax — $5300 DK) — I’m in no hurry to use Mac, whose upside is limited, but I do think he can easily deliver a 3X return this week on DK (this is DK only). Jones needs a big bounceback game after logging a couple of so-so ones, and the Jags just allowed another rookie QB in Zach Wilson to post 23.2 FP last week, and another rookie in Davis Mills posted 209/2 passing against the Jags in Week 15. I think Mac can get 16 FP here.

Not the best values, but I do like them this week:

Matthew Stafford (LAR, at Bal — $7100 DK, $7600 FD) — Staffford really crapped the bed last week, but he has been uneven for much of the second-half of the season, so it wasn’t a shock. Nor will it be a shock if he goes off this week, and that’s what I’d bank on against this depleted Ravens secondary that last week lost one of its top remaining CBs in Anthony Averett. Obviously, Joe Burrow shredded this secondary last week for 525/4 passing, and Aaron Rodgers went for 268/3 passing against them in Week 15. Staford’s top-3 WRs should give this secondary a ton of problems.

Patrick Mahomes (KC, vs. Cin — $7800 DK, $8500 FD) — He’s a better value on FD (eight-best), but he’s not a particularly great bargain this week. But there’s a lot to be said about using the former MVP this week given all the issues in the league with Covid, injuries, and bad weather. Mahomes has played a lot better on film the last 3-4 games, and he’s much more in control and settled in the pocket. He’s thrown for multiple scores and he’s reached 20+ FP in three straight games. Even Josh Johnson posted 304/2 passing in this matchup last week, and the Bengals are giving up the fourth-most passing yards per game (270.1) to QBs this season. Travis Kelce is a risky DFS play coming off Covid, but Kelce’s matchup is great, and I expect Tyreek Hill to bounce back after last week’s poor game coming back from Covid.

Running Backs

Jonathan Taylor (Ind, vs. LV — $9000 DK, $10000 FD) — He’s a top-4 value on both sites. Taylor is an absolute machine and he’s going to be busy in this one, given their QB situation. It’s likely we’ll see Carson Wentz start, which is good. The Raiders didn’t get run on last week but the Broncos, but Denver didn’t have many RB attempts (14), and both backs were banged up. Nick Chubb posted 23/91/1 rushing in this matchup two weeks ago, and the Raiders are giving up the third-most FPG (27.7) to RBs this season. It’s a 150+ yard, 2 TD potential blowup spot for Taylor.

David Montgomery (Chi, vs. NYG — $6500 DK, $7200 FD) — He’s the third-best value on both sites. Montgomery hasn’t been great, but his role has been with 16+ touches in seven straight, with 28 touches against the Seahawks last week. He has 5+ catches in four straight games and he has a great chance to keep it going this week against a Giants’ defense that’s allowing the ninth-most FPG (25.9) to RBs this season. Over the last four weeks, RBs are getting 27.5 carries per game and 5.8 targets, so Montgomery could get 25+ opportunities this week. Andy Dalton can also help stabilize the offense a little against a Giants defense that does not rush the passer well.

Elijah Mitchell (SF, vs. Hou — $6000 DK, $7800 FD) — He’s the fourth-best value on DK and the 12th-best value on FD. Mitchell put up 45.2 FP in his last two full games in Weeks 12-13 and while there is some risk coming off his layoff and concussion, there’s also the potential for a blowup game with 100+ yards and 1-2 TDs. The Texans have helped boost guys like Rashaad Penny (16/137/2 rushing), James Robinson (18/75/1), and Justin Jackson (19/166/2 scrimmage) in recent weeks. With Trey Lance starting, it’ll be more important than ever for the 49ers to dominate with their running game, so I’m fully expecting a 20+ point game from Mitchell.

Ronald Jones (TB, at NYJ — $6300 DK, $7000 FD) — He’s a top-6 I’ve never liked Jones other than in specific matchups and situations, so it has to be good for me to list. It’s really good.

Sony Michel (LAR, at Bal — $5800 DK, $7100 FD) — He’s a top-9 value on both sites. Michel leads the NFL in rushing over the last four weeks, even over Jonathan Taylor, and he’s averaging 22.3/105.8 rushing per game with two scores in that span. Cam Akers is not expected to play, so despite the tougher matchup, Michel is a mortal lock to deliver as long as he scores.

Devin Singletary (Buf, vs. Atl — $5400 DK, $6000 FD) — He’s the seventh-best value on both sites. I will warn you that I’m wrong about 80% of the time on this guy and this backfield, but all signs point to Singletary actually taking control of this backfield. Singletary went from 82% and 93% snaps shares in Weeks 14-15 to a 68% share last week with Zack Moss back in the mix. If Singletary comes up small, it’ll likely be because Moss stole 1-2 TDs from him, but Singletary has still produced 14+ FP in three straight games and the Falcons are giving up 136.9 scrimmage yards per game and the ninth-most FPG (25.6) to RBs this season. It’s actually a tougher matchup than usual for their passing game due to Atlanta’s coverage shells, so the RBs should be more involved.

Javonte Williams (Den, at Cin — $6100 FD) — He’s the top RB on FD, but buried on DK. so this is FD only. I may be overrating him this week, but Melvin Gordon is also banged up and he put up 7/-4 rushing last week. Obviously, the Broncos have major issues at WR, so it would behoove them to use the explosive Williams more in the passing game, and to stay as committed to the run as possible. Javonte put up 14/54/1 rushing and 3/57 in this matchup in late November, and the shaky Chargers run defense just allowed Rex Burkhead of all people to go off with 22/149/2 rushing for 28.9 FP last week.

Not the best values, but I do like them this week:

Darrel Williams (KC, vs. Cin — $5800 DK, $6200 FD) — He’s only a top-14 option on both sites, so he’s not a steal, so he has some downside if he doesn’t score. Clyde Edwards-Helaire hasn’t been ruled out, but he’s missed practice all week, so he’s not playing. Williams could give up over 40% of the snaps if KC is up in the one, but the Bengals are potent on offense themselves, so Williams could easily get 4-5 catches against a Bengals defense that’s giving up the fourth-most catches per game (6.7). If he scores, you’re good. One L Williams averaged 19.2/94.0 scrimmage yards per game with three TDs in five games without CEH earlier this season in Weeks 6-10.

Rashad Penny (Sea, vs. Det — $6100 DK, $6900 FD) — He’s not a value per se, but I will bite. Detroit is allowing the 4th-most schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing RBs (+5.2) and the fifth-most rushing yards per game (112.4) to RBs this season.this season. Penny averages 19.2 FPG in the six career games with 12+ touches. With Jared Goff doubtful, Penny’s upside is undeniable.

Boston Scott (Phi, vs. WFT — $4900 DK, $6000 FD) — He’s only the 15th-best value on FD, but he’s the eight-best value on DK. The Eagles running game can be tough to handicap with 3-4 guys involved, but we know they WILL run the ball a ton, and likely with success. We also know Miles Sanders is out, Jordan Howard is still questionable, and Kenny Gainwell has not been much of a factor. Scott could still come up small, but the argument for him is compelling. TFT is hurting with various injuries and poor QB play, and they give up an uncharacteristic 4.6 YPC to RBs the last four weeks. Philadelphia’s RBs tagged them for 200 rushing yards (on 33 carries) just two weeks ago.

Wide Receiver

Rashod Bateman (Bal, vs. LAR — $4800 DK, $5700 FD) — His low price is a lot of the appeal, and he’s a top-10 value on both sites. Assuming Marquise Brown goes, I’d guess Brown will see more of Jalen Ramsey than Bateman. Bateman last week played on 81% of the snaps compared to just 5% for Sammy Watkins, and he put up 7/108 receiving on 8 targets in Week 14 with Tyler Huntley, who is a good bet to start Week 17. Also, K.J. Osborn popped with 5/68/1 receiving on seven targets in this matchup last week.

Laquon Treadwell (Jac, at NE — $4000 DK, $5200 FD) — He’s a much better value on DK (fourth-best). The Jags are down all their TEs as of Saturday and it looks like they’ll have to use some guy named “Matt Sokol.” Additionally, it would make sense for the Pats to travel top corner JC Jackson on Marvin Jones, and Laviska Shenault is just coming off the Covid list and is no lock to play or be effective if he does play. Treadwell now has posted five straight games with 4+ catches and 50+ receiving yards.

Not the best values, but I do like them this week:

Jaylen Waddle (Mia, at Ten — $6700 DK, $7000 FD) — He’s a much better value on FD, for what it’s worth. Regardless of the increased price, I have to go back to the well this week with Waddle, who is just six catches away from breaking Anquan Boldin’s rookie record of 101 catches. He’s now had 7+ catches in seven of his last nine with 18+ FP in four straight. Deebo Samuel hit the Titans for 9/159 receiving and 5/32 rushing in this matchup last week, and the Titans are still giving up the most FPG (26.2) to slot receivers the last eight weeks.

Darnell Mooney (Chi, vs. NYG — $5500 DK, $6000 FD) — He’s only the 11-th-best value on FD and the 17th-best value on DK. The Giants CBs are solid, but beatable, and with Andy Dalton set to start, I feel better about Mooney. The Giants have a pair of solid corners in Adoree Jackson and James Bradberry, but they can be beat, as we saw last week with DeVonta Smith, who got mostly Bradberry with 5/80/1 receiving last week. In Dalton’s last two starts in Weeks 13-14, he’s got a solid 10/150 on 15 targets and was the WR19 for those two weeks. I think he can easily finish as a top-20 WR this week, but his pricing is WR33/34 this week.

Tyler Boyd (Cin, at KC — $5400 DK, $6200 FD) — Boyd is hardly a brilliant play, but he’s coming on strong now with double-digit FP in five of his last six games. The Chiefs are pretty tough to pass against, but they do give up the eight-most FPG to slot receivers (it’s mostly CB L’Jarius Sneed, who has been very generous to WRs) and Keenan Allen (6/78/1 receiving) and Hunter Renfrow (13/117/1) have crushed this matchup recently.

Tight Ends

Dallas Goedert (Phi, at WFT — $5100 DK, $5800 FD) — He’s the second-best value on FD, but only the 12th-best on FD. Regardless, while his volatility makes him tough to handicap, he’s hard to ignore, given his blowup potential. Goedert also had a TD nullified last week and is always open. He ripped TFT for 7/135 receiving on nine targets just two weeks ago, and Dalton Schultz also ripped them last week for 8/81/1 receiving for 22.2 FP.

Gerald Everett (Sea, vs. LV — $4100 DK, $5200 FD) — He’s a top-2 value on both sites. He’s clearly emerged as Russell Wilson’s third option in the passing game, maybe even #2. He’s hit 10 FP in five of his last seven, and the Lions have allowed seven different TEs to post double-digit FP in their last five contests, so another 10+ FP looks to be forthcoming.

Mo Allie-Cox (Ind, vs. LV — $2800 DK, $4600 FD) — He’s the top TE value on DK and the ninth-best on FD, but ONLY if Jack Doyle is inactive. Doyle did work on Friday, keep in mind. MOC has 4 TDs on just 37 targets this season, and it’s a great spot to make a big play and/or score, as the Raiders have major issues at safety and give up the third-most TDs per game (.7) to TEs.

Not the best values, but I do like them this week:

Foster Moreau (LV, at Ind — $3800 DK, $5200 FD) — After a slow start as the TE1 for Darren Waller, Moreau is starting to heat up, as Derek Carr is finally looking for him often. He’s posted 11/132 receiving on 13 targets in Weeks 15-16 against the Browns and Broncos, and Indy has allowed an individual TE to reach 12+ FP in seven of their last eight games after Zach Ertz posted 8/54 against them in Week 15. Over the last eight weeks, Indy is giving up the second-most targets per game, the third-most receptions per game, and the fifth-most yards and FP per game.

Primetime Players

AJ Dillon (GB, vs. Det — $5800 DK, $6300 FD) — He’s a top-6 value on both sites. Regardless of slate or format, I’m here to tell you Dillon could bust out for 100+ yards and 1-2 TDs. The Vikings are dead with Kirk Cousins out, and it’s games like these that prompted them to use a #2 pick on Dillon in 2020.

Fantasy Sports Writers Association Hall of Famer John Hansen has been an industry leader and pioneer since 1995, when he launched Fantasy Guru. His content has been found over the years on ESPN.com, NFL.com, SiriusXM, DirecTV, Yahoo!, among others outlets. In 2015 he sold Fantasy Guru and in 2020 founded FantasyPoints.com.