Week 17 optimal DraftKings lineup: Load up on the Packers
With one week left to go in the 2016 regular season — which will technically take place on the first day of 2017, but who’s counting? — we’re back with a DraftKings tournament lineup that could help you hit pay dirt.
As you’ll see below, we’re stacking a bunch of Cheeseheads this week. Below you’ll find my optimal DraftKings tournament lineup for Week 17.
QB: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers ($7,700)
Rodgers has been on fire, and there’s little doubt he’ll keep it rolling against the Detroit Lions, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks so far this season, including five passing scores in their previous two games. Rodgers lit up the Lions for four touchdowns back in Week 3.
RB1: Devonta Freeman, Atlanta Falcons ($7,000)
Freeman has been one of my favorite plays all week, so I definitely felt the need to include him here. My favorite nugget: “The Saints have given up the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this year, and the second-most rushing touchdowns (18). Freeman has scored eight rushing touchdowns in his past four home games.”
Freeman has split time with Tevin Coleman all year, but he’ll still capable of high-ceiling games. He has three top-six DraftKings performances in his last five games.
RB2: Latavius Murray, Oakland Raiders ($5,200)
Murray is another player I’ve been contemplating all week, and I’m pulling the trigger on him here. What ultimately sold me: He’s $1,000 cheaper than he was a week ago — and I played him a week ago. Plus, the matchup against Denver is not scary for running backs, but it will still keep enough people away to make Murray a contrarian play.
WR1: Jordy Nelson, Green Bay Packers ($8,100)
This one is pretty simple. I’m stacking Rodgers with Nelson, not only because that has proven to be the most bankable and profitable stack in recent history, but because it figures to be one of the best — if not the best — again in Week 17. We have both Rodgers and Nelson projected for top-four days at their respective positions.
WR2: Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers ($5,700)
We’re piling on with the Packers here. Alternatively, you could play Golden Tate instead of Adams here to get a Lions player to “bring it back” from the Rodgers-Nelson stack (you’d have to move Crowell from the flex to RB2 and replace Murray with someone cheaper, though). But I decided to go with the triple Packers stack here. Adams is a hit-or-miss player, but he has a penchant for big games. He has two top-six finishes in his past five games, and four top-11 finishes in his last 10.
WR3: J.J. Nelson, Arizona Cardinals ($4,600)
The other “J. Nelson” rounds out my receivers. He has seven touchdowns over the past eight weeks, including at least one in four straight contests. He’s not a sure thing, but he did see his snap rate increase from well below 50 percent to over 70 percent in each of the past two contests. All Nelson needs is one big play to make this pick worth it, and recent history suggests there’s a good chance that happens. He also will see a fair amount of E.J. Gaines, who has given up the ninth-most fantasy points per route run among all projected starting corners this week.
TE: Delanie Walker, Tennessee Titans ($4,000)
Walker actually performed better last week with Matt Cassel in at quarterback. He caught only three of seven targets for 23 yards, but he did haul in a touchdown, and nearly had a second touchdown late in the game. Walker’s touchdown potential is high, so if he’s able to find the paint, he should have no problem returning minimum 3x value on his salary (12 points), with 4x value likely as well (16 points). He would just need a 5-50-1 line to return 4x value.
Flex: Isaiah Crowell, Cleveland Browns ($4,400)
Crowell and the Browns face the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 17, and the Steelers really have nothing to play for with the No. 3 seed locked up, so there’s a chance we won’t see much of their starters. Crowell should find success against the Steelers defense, which has given up the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs so far this year, including at least one rushing score in three straight games.
D/ST: Kansas City Chiefs ($3,300)
The Chiefs D/ST has put together top-10 DraftKings performances in nine of 15 games this season, including eight of their past 11. They have scored double-digit points in 10 of their past 13 contests. Up next are the San Diego Chargers and Philip Rivers, who leads the league in interceptions (18). Rivers has thrown an astronomical 14 interceptions since Week 8.