For the final week of the regular season, most seasonal fantasy football leagues are already wrapped up, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop playing. It’s a great week for daily fantasy football (DFS), and with some NFL teams having more to play for than other this week, there is a great edge to be found in targeting the right teams and players.
The Washington Redskins are one of the teams that have everything to play for, as this is a must-win game for them. The same cannot be said for their opponents, the New York Giants, who have already locked up a playoff spot. That makes the Redskins starters an excellent target for DFS, considering that they will be expected to play the whole game, and could see time against the Giants reserve players for at least part of the game.
Vegas agrees, as the Redskins are tied for the fourth-highest implied total of any team this week, and are favored by 7.5 points.
Now let’s take a look at which of those Redskins players are best suited to help your succeed in daily fantasy football in Week 17.
FanDuel Price: $7,900
DraftKings Price: $6,500
The Giants have been very stingy to opposing quarterbacks this season, allowing the second fewest fantasy points to the position of any team. However, as I mentioned earlier, the Giants will likely be without many of their starters for at least part of this game. That puts Cousins, and much of the Redskins offense as you will read later, in a great position this week.
Cousins has flashed great fantasy-appeal recently, putting up more 29 or more points in two of his past five games. However, he averaged just over 15 fantasy points over the other three games in that span, leaving him a little too inconsistent to be a lock.
This one, along with many picks in this final week of the season, is going to come down to what we hear about the Giants defense before the game. If news comes out that many of the starters won’t even play, or will be pulled early, than Cousins can be slotted in as a cash and tournament play. If the Giants decide to give their starters decent playing time in this game, Cousins will be knocked down to solely a tournament play. Even in that situation, he will be a great option in those tournament lineups.
FanDuel Price: $5,900
DraftKings Price: $4,400
With 16 games down, no running back has emerged to be a consistent fantasy asset for the Redskins this season. Rob Kelley is the clear-cut starter at this point, but he has been dealing with a knee injury throughout the week.
Week 16 was good overall for the Redskins running backs, but Chris Thompson scored both of the touchdowns, despite having just four touches. His number of touches keeps him out of consideration, but his presence, along with Kelley’s own incosistent play, takes Kelley out of cash game consideration.
Kelley is cheap, and will be worth tournament consideration if we get some good news about the Giants starters. He has not shown the same ceiling or consistent high-scoring ability that many other starting running backs have this season. But with some of them out this week, and others seeing a light workload, Kelley is certainly in play as a tournament option.
FanDuel Price: $7,000
DraftKings Price: $5,600
The wide receivers will be the most reliant position this week on the status of the Giants defenders. Pro Football Focus grades three of the Giants top cornerbacks among the top 37 cornerbacks in the league, and has two of them inside the top seven. Depending whether one, two, or even all three of them will sit, will reveal which of the Redskins receivers will receive a matchup-boost on Sunday.
Now, looking at the receivers, Jackson is the one that has led the pack recently. He has topped 100 receiving yards in each of the past three games, and four of the past five. Whereas we viewed him as a boom or bust deep threat earlier in the season, he has now caught 12 passes over the past two games, and has proven to be much more reliable.
Surely, his recent play has a lot to do with his upcoming contract negotiations, but we’ll enjoy the production for now.
His price rose once again on both sites, but he is still very affordable, considering the numbers he has put up recently. With his big play ability always there, he remains a tournament option. And with his volume increasing recently, he is actually a solid cash play on both sites this week as well.
FanDuel Price: $5,600
DraftKings Price: $5,000
Despite Jackson’s increase in volume, Garcon has still out-targeted him narrowly over the past five games. Those two have recently taken a clear lead over Jamison Crowder, who has seen a total of 12 targets over the past three games.
With at least 65 yards or a touchdown reception in seven of his past eight games, Garcon has proven to be a reliable option in both cash games and tournaments on both sites.
As I mentioned with Jackson, be sure to check out who will be starting at cornerback for the Giants, to help make your decision on whether you can play Garcon in cash games. With the Redskins high implied total, if any Giants cornerbacks are ruled out, it would be safe to play both Jackson and Garcon in the same tournament lineup with Cousins to maximize upside.
FanDuel Price: $7,000
DraftKings Price: $5,100
For the third straight week, Reed’s status remains unclear. He has been practicing, but he practiced last week too, and was not a big part of the plan on game day.
But his ceiling when healthy puts him among the league’s elite tight ends, as noted by his high price on both major daily fantasy sites. He is the most expensive tight end on FanDuel, which makes me hesitant to use him there, but he costs 1% of the salary cap less on DraftKings. He cannot be relied on in cash games at all, and should not be considered there.
But he remains an excellent tournament play on DraftKings, due to his extremely high ceiling, and the fact that he will likely be under-owned due to his unclear status.
Washington Redskins D/ST
FanDuel Price: $4,600
DraftKings Price: $2,900
Whereas all of the players that I mentioned above would receive a boost if the Giants choose to rest any of their defensive starters, the Redskins Defense would be significantly impacted if the Giants choose to rest anyone on the other side of the ball.
The Giants have already given up nine or more fantasy points to three of the past four defenses that they have faced, and the Redskins have hit that number in two of their past three games. They are also under-priced on both sites.
If Eli Manning or Odell Beckham are revealed to not be suiting up for the entire game on Sunday, the Redskins defense will be one of the top plays of the week in all formats.
FanDuel Price: $4,800
DraftKings Price: N/A
Dustin Hopkins got back on track in Week 16 with 11 FanDuel points, for his second straight week with a double digit score. His recent misses are still a bit scary, but he will receive a boost from an excellent matchup in this game.
The Giants are allowing the eighth most fantasy points per game to opposing kickers this season, and Hopkins racked up a season-high 19 on them in their first meeting in Week 3.
At $300 above minimum price, he could be too expensive to fit into some cash lineups, making it acceptable to pivot away from him if you need the salary elsewhere. However, in tournaments, he is one of the top options this week, and is still $500 less than the most expensive kicker.
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