Daily Fantasy Football Week 17: DraftKings, FanDuel Strategies and Value Picks

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistDecember 31, 2021

Daily Fantasy Football Week 17: DraftKings, FanDuel Strategies and Value Picks

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    The NFL is entering uncharted waters in Week 17 of the 2021 season, at least from a fantasy football perspective.

    Normally, this is the final contest of the campaign, which adds an extra layer of unpredictability since teams that have locked up playoff spots or been locked out of the postseason often pull their players, creating chaos in the fantasy realm.

    That chaos is still coming—it's just delayed this season because the league added an 18th game. Use that to your advantage this weekend; it should be more straightforward than Week 17s of the past.

    To help point you the right direction, we'll spotlight a value pick to plug into your fantasy lineup at each of the three marquee positions.

Quarterback: Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals

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    DraftKings: $6,900; FanDuel: $7,700

    Value is a relative term. It might conjure up images of clearance-priced bargains, but a seemingly high price can be valuable if the quality justifies the cost.

    Enter Joe Burrow.

    He is priced closer to the quarterback position's middle class than its elites, but his numbers can outshine anyone's. They literally did just that in Week 16, when he blitzed the Baltimore Ravens for 525 passing yards and four touchdowns.

    That was a critical contest against an exploitable matchup. This is exactly the same. The Bengals need the victory more than the Kansas City Chiefs, who have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, per Yahoo. Burrow might not go full berserk mode again, but he could be worth a lot more than his cost.

Running Back: Chase Edmonds, Arizona Cardinals

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    DraftKings: $5,700; FanDuel: $6,500

    Keep your eyes glued to the injury report because that will let you know the level of value to expect from Chase Edmonds.

    To put it simply: If James Conner is unavailable—he didn't play Saturday and has yet to practice as of Thursday—then Edmonds could be a fantasy monster.

    Edmonds has top-five upside (at least) without even a top-20 cost. That alone indicates the potential payoff here. In case it doesn't, when Arizona gave Edmonds control of the backfield on Christmas, he responded by transforming 24 touches into 127 scrimmage yards and a score.

    He gets a tricky matchup Sunday in the Dallas Cowboys, who have allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points to the position. But Edmonds' Week 16 opponent, the Indianapolis Colts, was just as stingy (sixth-fewest) and still couldn't slow him down.

Wide Receiver: DeVonta Smith, Philadelphia Eagles

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    DraftKings: $6,300; FanDuel: $6,100

    Since debuting with six catches on eight targets for 71 yards and a score, rookie wide receiver DeVonta Smith has appeared on the same page as Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts.

    Of course, that should surprise no one since the tandem's history dates back to their shared days at Alabama.

    Smith has usually landed between good and awesome this season. Last time out landed closer to the latter, as he turned seven targets into five receptions for 80 yards and a touchdown.

    This should be another really good-to-great week, as he's squaring off against a Washington Football Team defense that is dreadful against the pass. Washington ranks third from the bottom in both passing yards against and fantasy points allowed to receivers.


    Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com or fanduel.com for details.