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Daily Fantasy Football: Best Value Picks For Week 17

December 28, 2017
Each week, this column attempts to make observations about daily fantasy football and offers recommendations on what are considered value picks, meaning players whose salary cap figure represents something of a bargain.

This would be the recommendation for Week 17 -- unless you simply can't stay away from DFS or think you've identified some sleeper plays, this might be a Sunday to take a break.

Some NFL teams have actually announced they will not be playing all their starters. Other clubs will say the right things about going full-throttle, but who can really take the pulse of two teams out of the playoff hunt in a game with almost no importance?

The Philadelphia Eagles have clinched home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, so their game against Dallas is meaningless.

The Kansas City Chiefs, who are locked in as the AFC's No. 4 seed, have already said they are sitting quarterback Alex Smith for rookie Patrick Mahomes. Maybe that means Mahomes turns out to be a value pick since his cap number is so low and he'll be getting all the snaps. Or maybe it means that the proud Denver defense, who Mahomes faces on the road, gives him a rude welcome to the NFL and blasts a hole in the fantasy lineup that took a risk on the rookie.

The best advice is to wait until the playoffs start and everyone is back to full speed, both in terms of personnel and motivation.

For those still inclined, here's the value picks for Week 17.

Quarterback
Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons: The Falcons can advance to the playoffs with a win against Carolina at home. They can also get in in the unlikely event that Arizona beats the Seahawks in Seattle. Ryan represents talent, experience and motivation.

Running back

Alex Collins, Baltimore Ravens: Collins has shown he can produce huge fantasy days while also maintaining a reliable floor. Sunday's opponent is a wildcard. Cincinnati looked like they had quit for the season against Minnesota two weeks ago and then knocked Detroit out of the playoffs last week. This is a vote for the Ravens showing they're made of sterner stuff than the Lions.

Dion Lewis, New England Patriots: The Patriots always play hard, and this Sunday home-field advantage in the playoffs is on the line in a home game against the New York Jets. Lewis has emerged as the No. 1 back.

Wide receiver

Mohamed Sanu, Atlanta Falcons: Sanu has been getting a reliable six-to-seven targets a game for the last six weeks and this is just the type of game where Sanu becomes a key pass option because of the attention teammate Julio Jones will attract. Sanu is also a salary cap bargain.

Keenan Allen, L.A. Chargers: The Chargers are in the playoff hunt, and Allen is one of the few premium wide receivers who isn't carrying some nagging injury into Week 17. You should certainly get your money's worth with Allen. He's averaged more than 11 targets a game during the last six weeks.

Tight end

Delanie Walker, Tennessee Titans: The Titans are also in the AFC playoff chase, and Walker is the offense's most reliable receiver, although his production has fallen off during the last three weeks. With Walker you get a bargain price with the expectation that he will return to his earlier form.

Kicker

Matt Bryant, Atlanta Falcons: Big-time kicker in a meaningful game in a dome.

Defense/special teams

Baltimore Ravens: The Ravens lead the NFL in takeaways, and they're at home in a game where a win puts them in the playoffs.

Photo Credit: Sabina Moran/PressBox