Rich Hribar

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The NFL Week 17 Worksheet

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

If you're reading this, you either still have a league championship this weekend, really love fantasy football or you're wading into the Daily Fantasy waters. Week 17 can be a weird week with players resting and some being shut down – and we don’t have many games where both teams are playing for something - so we’ll navigate all of that in this slightly abbreviated version of this column.


As for the token disclaimer, the goal of this article is to provide a top-down, statistical snapshot for each game each week, running down weekly point spreads, team totals, play calling splits, and statistical bullet points on the players and teams involved. Although we’re focusing strictly on PPR league scoring here as a baseline, there’s more than enough to spread around across formats and daily leagues. The reason we’re operating under a PPR umbrella is it allows us to cover a larger portion of the players involved in action weekly.


Lastly, as the author, it’s imperative that I note that this is NOT a start/sit column, rather an expectations column. The labels for each subset of players for each game are simply a vehicle for those expectations and have a different context for each player that you can find at the end of the column. I encourage that you use the game by game tables and data points here in conjunction with the Start/Sit column posted weekly by Nick Mensio, Pat Daugherty’s rankings in the Goal Line Stand, Evan Silva’s Matchup’s column, Ray Summerlin's Waiver Wired and most importantly, your own information and thought process. Remember, you control your own team. With that out of the way, let’s hit all the Week 17 games with a PPR light…


Packers @ Lions

Green BayRank@DetroitRank
7.5   Spread -7.5  
17.8   Implied Total 25.3  
20.6 19 Points/Gm 25.0 8
23.3 21 Points All./Gm 24.3 25
62.4 21 Plays/Gm 61.7 24
64.0 18 Opp. Plays/Gm 64.9 25
38.4% 25 Rush% 36.7% 30
61.7% 8 Pass% 63.3% 3
45.9% 30 Opp. Rush % 41.6% 12
54.1% 3 Opp. Pass % 58.4% 21


  • All eight of Brett Hundley's touchdown passes have come on the road this season.
  • Jamaal Williams played a season-high 93 percent of the snaps last week.
  • In the nine games since their Week 7 bye, Detroit has allowed 151.2 yards from scrimmage and 27.9 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields.
  • Over that span, they have allowed 12 top-20 scoring running backs and 11 touchdowns to the position.
  • Matthew Stafford has thrown multiple touchdown passes in six consecutive games versus the Packers, tied for the longest streak for an opponent in Green Bay history.
  • Eric Ebron leads all tight ends with 20 receptions over the past three weeks, while ranking second in targets (28) and receiving yards (210) over that span.
  • Over that timeframe Ebron has received 23.2 percent of the team targets over the past three weeks after just 12.6 on the season prior.
  • Over that same time, Marvin Jones has received just 12.5 percent of the team targets (after 20.5 percent prior) and Golden Tate 17.9 percent (after receiving 21.7 percent prior).


Trust: Marvin Jones (he’s not getting the volume he was in the middle of the season, but has tormented the Packers with lines of 6-205-2, 5-76-0 and 7-107-2 in his three games versus them with the Lions)


Bust: DET RBs (the three-way split here between Tion Green, Theo Riddick and Ameer Abdullah went 7-11-7 last week, which is enough to leave this group alone considering collectively this is the worst rushing team in the NFL), Brett Hundley (he’s been “better” on the road, but is still sporting a 4.4 Y/A over his past three games, which is far too shallow to buy in on), Randall Cobb (he’s the only Packers’ wideout you can have any type of floor expectations for based on short receptions, but is averaging just 30.6 yards per game over his past five starts with Hundley under center)


Reasonable Return: Matthew Stafford (he has limped to the finish line here with five straight weeks at QB15 or lower, but is at home indoors against a pass defense that has allowed 16 or more points to opposing passers in seven of their past nine games), Golden Tate (he’s slowed down along with Stafford, but should be bounce back against a defense he’s posted back to back WR1 scoring weeks against), Eric Ebron (I do believe that both Jones and Tate bounce back to close the season, but just keep riding the wave with Ebron while the Packers have allowed four touchdowns to tight ends over the past four weeks), Jamaal Williams (the only trepidation with Williams is that he’s attached to a significant road dog, but after back to back tough draws against Carolina and Minnesota, he gets a run defense that has gotten smashed by opposing backs since their bye), Kenny Golladay (he's a deeper play because as mentioned, I believe Tate and Jones rebound here, but he played a season-high 95 percent of the team snaps last and saw eight targets while he's also not a victim if the Lions pull the rug out on the starters here)


Jaguars @ Titans


3.5   Spread -3.5  
19.3   Implied Total 22.8  
27.1 5 Points/Gm 21.3 18
16.9 2 Points All./Gm 23.1 20
67.9 2 Plays/Gm 60.7 29
62.0 10 Opp. Plays/Gm 65.7 28
49.4% 1 Rush% 44.4% 11
50.6% 32 Pass% 55.7% 22
41.9% 14 Opp. Rush % 38.0% 3
58.1% 19 Opp. Pass % 62.0% 30


  • The Jaguars have scored 30 or more points in four straight games, their longest streak as a franchise.
  • The Jaguars allowed four touchdowns on 11 plays inside of their own 10-yard line last week after allowing just six touchdowns on 18 plays inside of their 10-yard line all season prior.
  • Tennessee ranks sixth in the league in yards per play at home (5.8) while ranking 26th on the road (4.7).
  • The Titans are the only team in the league with more rushing touchdowns (18) than passing touchdowns (13).
  • Marcus Mariota's 2.8 percent touchdown rate ranks 38th in the league after ranking fourth in the NFL with a 5.5 percent touchdown rate over his first two seasons.
  • Derrick Henry has double the runs (18) of 10 or more yards compared to DeMarco Murray (nine) on 36 fewer rushing attempts on the season.


Rest Alert: The Jaguars are locked into the No. 3 seed in the AFC. Doug Marrone has claimed the Jaguars will treat this like any other game, but all Jaguars could be potentially compromised to a degree if you’re using them in lineups.


Trust: Derrick Henry (with DeMarco Murray dealing with a torn MCL, he’s going to finally get a shot at a full workload and may do so against a defense that will rest players at some juncture of the game and even if not, has allowed seven top-20 scorers at the position since their Week 8 bye)


Bust: Marcus Mariota (he’s been a QB1 just three times all season and even with the possibility of Jacksonville resting guys along the way here, he’s been far too lackluster to bank on outside of wishful thinking), Rishard Matthews (even with Jacksonville playing their worst game defensively a week ago, they still weren’t damaged by wideouts and have allowed more than five receptions to just three wide receivers all season), Corey Davis (coming off his best game, it will be hard to chase that performance when his best path to production is Jacksonville pulling key defensive contributors)


Reasonable Return: Delanie Walker (his yardage totals have dropped three straight weeks, but targets should still be funneled in his direction given the matchup and he notched a TE5 scoring week when these teams last met back in Week 2), Blake Bortles (he’s been a QB1 in five straight starts and is the highest scoring quarterback overall over that span while the Titans are 26th in passing yards allowed), Leonard Fournette (he’s run for 3.2 YPC over the past six weeks, but has maintained his usage and scoring upside as he’s scored in three straight games with 21 or more touches in each of those games), Keelan Cole (he’s the first Jaguars rookie to every have back to back 100-yard receiving games and has four straight weeks as a WR2 or better), Dede Westbrook (he’s had just 6.9 percent and 14 percent of the team targets over the past two weeks, but still has managed double-digit points in four of his past five games)


Editor’s Note: Nobody hit FanDuel’s Golden 5 jackpot this season, meaning the prize has grown to a massive $340,000. And this week, regardless of whether or not someone hits a perfect lineup, they’re giving away that $340K to whoever wins this week’s final contest. Play FREE for your shot at $340,000!


Bills @ Dolphins

-3   Spread 3  
22.8   Implied Total 19.8  
18.7 24 Points/Gm 17.7 27
22.9 19 Points All./Gm 24.7 28
63.1 16 Plays/Gm 61.9 23
66.6 30 Opp. Plays/Gm 61.7 8
48.1% 3 Rush% 36.4% 31
52.0% 30 Pass% 63.6% 2
44.4% 25 Opp. Rush % 43.1% 18
55.6% 8 Opp. Pass % 56.9% 15


  • Miami averages 25.5 points per game at home as opposed to 12.4 points per game on the road, the largest gap in the league.
  • Buffalo has rushed for 98.9 yards per game on the road (21st) as opposed to 149.9 per game at home (third).
  • Miami allows just 71.0 rushing yards per game at home (fourth) while allowing 135.1 per game on the road (29th).
  • In two career games visiting the Dolphins while with the Bills, LeSean McCoy has 37 total yards on 20 touches while having 350 yards from scrimmage on 71 touches in Buffalo.
  • From Week 9 on, the Bills have allowed 179.4 yards from scrimmage per game to opposing backfields, the most in the league.
  • Over that span, backfields have rushed 248 times for 1,169 yards (4.7 YPC and 146.1 yards per game) with 13 touchdowns.
  • Miami's three rushing touchdowns would be the fewest they've ever had in a season. Their previous low is five rushing touchdowns in 1966.
  • At 895 receiving yards, Jarvis Landry needs 105 yards to avoid becoming the first ever wide receiver to record over 100 receptions in a season while failing to reach 1,000 yards receiving. Three running backs have reached those marks.


Trust: Charles Clay (his only TE1 scoring week since returning from injury came against the Dolphins, who have allowed the second-most receptions to opposing tight ends on the season), Kenyan Drake (his numbers were depressing last week, but is in for a bounce back spot at home against the league’s worst run defense over the past several weeks)


Bust: Kelvin Benjamin (he has double-digit points in two of his past three games, but is visibly running around on a hobbled leg, while he was shut down by Xavien Howard when these teams met two weeks ago), DeVante Parker (he’s bounced back with double-digit targets in each of his past two games, but you’ll need that game script to set up again as both came on the road with 49 and 38 targets available as a team while Miami played extreme catchup), Jay Cutler (he’s hit 15 points just three times all season while facing the defense that has allowed the fewest passing touchdown on the season)


Reasonable Return: LeSean McCoy (his unbelievably low numbers on the road in Miami are still part of a tiny sample that could just be variance, but the Bills have long standing been a better team at home than on the road over the past two seasons, which have impacted McCoy altogether), Tyrod Taylor (he’s been a QB1 in just one of his six starts on the road this year, but Miami has allowed 17 or more points to opposing passers in five of their past seven games), Jarvis Landry (his floor is among the league’s best, but I’d expect the game script to be more in check than when he tallied 10 catches when these teams met two weeks ago)


Bengals @ Ravens

10   Spread -10  
15.3   Implied Total 25.3  
17.3 28 Points/Gm 24.5 9
21.5 15 Points All./Gm 18.1 4
56.8 32 Plays/Gm 65.3 9
67.8 32 Opp. Plays/Gm 64.7 21
40.7% 22 Rush% 44.3% 13
59.3% 11 Pass% 55.7% 20
45.5% 29 Opp. Rush % 41.8% 13
54.5% 4 Opp. Pass % 58.3% 20


  • Since their Week 10 bye, opposing wide receivers have averaged 177.2 receiving yards per game versus the Ravens after averaging 113.1 per game over their opening nine games.
  • Over that span, they have allowed five top-20 scoring wide receivers after allowing just three over their first nine games.
  • Andy Dalton has thrown one or fewer touchdown passes in nine of 12 career games against Baltimore and in five the past six meetings.
  • Bengals' running backs have rushed for 494 yards on 108 carries (4.6 YPC) and three touchdowns over their past five games.
  • Over the 10 games prior, Cincinnati running backs rushed for 595 yards on 195 carries (3.1 YPC) and three touchdowns.
  • Baltimore has allowed 77.1 rushing yards per game since Week 8, second in the league.
  • Joe Flacco has been higher than QB15 in just three of 18 career games versus the Bengals.


Bust: Andy Dalton (his track record versus Baltimore speaks for itself while the highest a passer has finished on the road in Baltimore this year has been QB15)


Reasonable Return: A.J. Green (he has double-digit targets in three of his past four games and while the Ravens have been gashed by lead wideouts in the yardage department even prior to the Jimmy Smith injury, they still haven’t allowed a wide receiver to score a touchdown since Week 9), Joe Flacco (his history versus the Bengals is alarmingly poor, but he’s a big home favorite with a moderate team total, so I don’t want to leave him for dead while he’s scored 16.7 points or more in each of his past four starts), Alex Collins (he’s shown the past two weeks that he still needs to find the end zone to hit his apex, but even without the trips to the paint, has been the RB29 in each of his past two games while the Bengals have allowed double-digit points to 15 backs since their Week 6 bye), Giovani Bernard (he has double-digit points in each of his past four games and with Joe Mixon likely sidelined to close the year, Bernard will continue to be a useful option, even in a tougher matchup), Mike Wallace (it’s not flashy, but he’s averaged 11.4 points per game over his past eight games with WR3 or better finishes in six of those weeks)


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Rich Hribar is a husband, father, sports meteorologist and a slave to statistics. A lifelong sports fan and fantasy gamer. You can find him on Twitter @LordReebs.
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