Week 17 Championship Start'em / Sit'em

Wednesday, Dec 27, 2023 at 2:05 pm ET

This is the Fantasy Nerd's look at the best and worst matchups for Week 17 of the 2023 NFL season. Analysis is aggregated from multiple sources including FN. Rankings are based upon PPR (point per reception) scoring. Given the known conditions, these matchups are the ones to watch and/or avoid.

Please Note: This list does not generally include the elite players that you are going to start regardless of matchup. You don't need us to tell you to start Tyreek Hill, Patrick Mahomes, or Christian McCaffrey. Instead, we take a look at other players on your team that we believe either have great matchups or should be avoided for multiple reasons. Factors like opposing defense, performance trending, and peer comparisons may influence our decisions.

Championship Week!

Start 'em Brock Purdy (SF, QB)
Brock Purdy may have left you high and dry last week tossing four interceptions and no touchdowns in his worst game this year (2.4 points), but we're anticipating a big bounce back this week when the Niners take on Washington. The Commanders have given up the 2nd-most fantasy points to the QB position this season. Assuming he plays, 20+ points is virtually a lock.
2nd Most Pts to QB
Start 'em C.J. Stroud (HOU, QB)
There's a good chance that C.J. Stroud helped get you to the playoffs even though he has missed the last two games with a concussion. As of right now, it appears that Stroud will be cleared from protocol and will suit up against the Titans. Geno Smith put up 17 points against Tennessee last week and we're expecting Stroud to return to form and deliver similar (if not better) results.
15th Fewest Pts to QB
Start 'em Aaron Jones (GB, RB)
While Aaron Jones didn't find the endzone last week, he did manage to put up 127 rushing yards. Now he'll face his NFC North adversary Minnesota Vikings who kept him to just 8.6 points when they played back in Week 8. Jones is coming off back to back double-digit games, and it wouldn't be surprising to see him make it three in a row. Jones is a solid RB2 this week.
14th Fewest Pts to RB
Start 'em Josh Jacobs (LV, RB)
We haven't seen Josh Jacobs on the field the past two games (quad injury), but if he's able to suit up for this one, he's a must-start against an Indy defense that has given up the third-most fantasy points to running backs this year including 19.2 points to Bijan Robinson last week.
UPDATE: Josh Jacobs has been downgraded to Doubtful and we no longer anticipate him playing this week. Zamir White would get the start.
3rd Most Pts to RB
Start 'em Rashee Rice (KC, WR)
There was so much chatter about Rashee Rice coming into the season, and while it has taken many weeks to get here, Rice has become the top target (outside of Kelce) in this Chief's offense. He has seen a whopping 31 targets over his last three games and delivered double-digit points over his last five games. The volume combined with a sweet matchup makes Rice a must-start for the championship.
10th Most Pts to WR
Start 'em Nico Collins (HOU, WR)
Even in a bad matchup last week against Cleveland, Nico Collins was able to deliver double digits. Now he gets not only a plus matchup, but he should also get C.J. Stroud back under center. That puts Collins back in the WR1 discussion. Tennessee just gave up double digits to all three Seahawks receivers last week (Lockett, Metcalf, JSN). Don't be surprised to see the Texans produce similar results.
5th Most Pts to WR
Start 'em David Njoku (CLE, TE)
In what has been a pretty depleted position this year, David Njoku has been a nice surprise. He has four touchdowns in his last three games and should keep producing for fantasy owners in their championship games. The Jets have given up the third-most receiving scores to tight ends this season putting Njoku squarely in the TE1 discussion.
12th Most Pts to TE
Start 'em San Francisco 49ers (SF, DEF)
San Francisco had trouble containing Lamar Jackson last week allowing 33 points to be put up on the scoreboard. When the Niners face the Commanders this week, they'll be chasing down backup QB Jacoby Brissett - a far easier task that should lead to bountiful fantasy points.
5th Most Pts to DEF
Start 'em Jake Moody (SF, K)
Jake Moody has been pretty consistent this year. It helps when your team can move the ball with ease. We're counting on that as San Francisco faces the Commanders this week. Washington has given up the 2nd-most fantasy points to kickers this season including a whopping 14 fantasy points last week to Greg "The Leg" Zuerlein. Moody should brighten up your mood in the fantasy championship.
2nd Most Pts to K
Sit 'em Tua Tagovailoa (MIA, QB)
We realize that it may be difficult to sit Tua Tagovailoa given the offensive weapons at his disposal, but Jaylen Waddle is expected to miss this game and the Ravens defense is incredibly tough. Not only has Baltimore given up the 2nd-fewest fantasy points to QBs this season, but they just dominated MVP-candidate Brock Purdy last week surrendering just 2.4 fantasy points. The Ravens have only allowed two QBs to eclipse twenty points all year. Hopefully you have a better option.
2nd Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Derek Carr (NO, QB)
Fresh off a solid performance against the Rams last week (25 fantasy points), you might be tempted to ride the hot hand in the championship...especially in a plus matchup. Derek Carr has been a bit of a roller coaster with his weekly production this season regardless of matchup. The last time he faced the Bucs was back in Week 4 when he delivered just 3.2 fantasy points. He has almost as many sub-200 yard games as he does 300+ yard games. It's tough to predict what kind of game he'll have here. If you have a better option, please consider it.
8th Most Pts to QB
Sit 'em Gus Edwards (BAL, RB)
With back-to-back games of endzone trips and 14 fantasy points, Gus "the Bus" will need to score a touchdown to remain relevant in this matchup. Miami has a solid front surrendering the 8th-fewest fantasy points to the position. Over their last two games, the Dolphins run defense has held both Breece Hall and Tony Pollard to a combined 8.1 fantasy points. This may be a lot to ask of Gus this week.
8th Fewest Pts to RB
Sit 'em Clyde Edwards-Helaire (KC, RB)
We're watching the status of Isiah Pacheco this week who hasn't yet cleared concussion protocol. If he is able to suit up, look for Clyde Edwards-Helaire's rankings this week to drop and make CEH a bench-candidate. If Pacheco sits this one out, we'd expect more work for CEH but not enough to consider him anything more than a flex option against Cincy.
15th Most Pts to RB
Sit 'em Rashid Shaheed (NO, WR)
As uttered in the movie Rocky 3, "there is no tomorrow". Week 17 is when fantasy championships are decided. While Rashid Shaheed delivered a solid 18 fantasy points last week against the Rams, are you comfortable trusting him against the Bucs this week? Even in a plus matchup, Shaheed carries the kind of risk that we simply try to avoid in the championship. The last time he faced the Bucs back in Week 4, he managed just 4.3 points. Shaheed is a dynamic player, but his consistency leaves a lot to be desired.
3rd Most Pts to WR
Sit 'em Gabriel Davis (BUF, WR)
If you started Gabe Davis last week, you were rewarded with an impressive 23 fantasy points. Incidentally, if you add up Davis' numbers from the previous two weeks, you'll still arrive at 23 points. Davis is wildly inconsistent, but his inconsistency has significant swings. Look at his production over the last ten games: 23, 0, 0, 22.5, 0, 9.6, 0, 23.7, 1.6, 3.1. If you're comfortable with the risk that Davis brings, more power to you. We'd feel a lot better not having to start someone with so many doughnuts in their weekly production this season.
13th Most Pts to WR
Sit 'em Pat Freiermuth (PIT, TE)
We had higher expectations for Pat Freiermuth back in August. Getting injured caused him to miss several games this season, and outside a monster 21-point fantasy day in Week 12, he's largely been quiet delivering single digits. QB Mason Rudolph didn't even target him last week. If QB Kenny Pickett is able to suit up this week, perhaps Freiermuth could muster up some points, but the likelihood is that he'll be sitting on our collective benches in favor of someone more likely to to put points on the board.
14th Most Pts to TE
Sit 'em Miami Dolphins (MIA, DEF)
The Dolphins did an admirable job against Dak Prescott and the Cowboys last week, but it will take more effort to try and contain Lamar Jackson. The Ravens have allowed the third-fewest fantasy points to D/ST's this season. You should be able to stream a more reliable option at defense this week.
3rd Fewest Pts to DEF
Sit 'em Jason Sanders (MIA, K)
It might be tempting to leave Jason Sanders in your lineup. After all, he just delivered a whopping 22 fantasy points last week and a solid 12 fantasy points the week prior. We're controlling our expectations for him this week against a stingy Baltimore defense. Over the past two weeks, the Ravens have held kickers to a combined 6 fantasy points.
14th Fewest Pts to K

Join the Discussion

If asking a sit/start question, be sure to provide your scoring format and contribute to answering questions from other FN members as well.

Nathan Foster CommentedDec 28, 2023 5:39 pm

It's the Ship and have to start 2 Rbs, Gibbs, Taylor or Swift? And need to sit 1 WR , Hopkins, Ridley, G Wilson or D Robinson?

mrock CommentedDec 28, 2023 6:43 pm

Similar spot. Gibbs and Taylor. Sit Robinson.

yuh CommentedDec 29, 2023 8:27 pm

1/2 ppr.
At flex position need to choose one -
Zamir White, Bajan Robinson, Ty Chandler.
R.White and K. Williams are my starters.

Hinzie22 CommentedDec 30, 2023 11:12 am

Id go zamir assuming jacobs doesn’t play

yuh CommentedDec 30, 2023 11:22 am

Thnx hinzie22

Nerd CommentedDec 30, 2023 1:06 pm

I so badly want to go with Zamir White at the flex, but would probably go the chalky route and play Bijan. Good luck!

Wallstreet Skeeter CommentedDec 30, 2023 2:05 pm

Bijan for the win

yuh CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:29 pm

Anyone concerned about the Chicago weather?
Bijan gets receiving yards, but White has a great match up.

Nerd CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:48 pm

Absolutely - I think White's matchup is fantastic. White is a great option. Bijan can be great as well. Go with your gut on this one.

yuh CommentedDec 31, 2023 3:25 pm

Thanks nerd, glad I went with my gut

Nerd CommentedDec 31, 2023 3:30 pm

Me too.

I'm playing against Kyren Williams who is having a decent game. I have Kamara, Bijan, and James Cook and combined they don't have what Williams does.

Hinzie22 CommentedDec 29, 2023 10:18 pm

Championship game! Thanks for the great advice! Would you start Calvin Ridley, Deontae Johnson, or Jonathan Mingo in .5 ppr?

Wallstreet Skeeter CommentedDec 30, 2023 2:05 pm

Calvin Ridley

Ed Chan CommentedDec 30, 2023 7:07 pm

Ridley for me too. Good luck!

Eric Russell CommentedDec 30, 2023 10:14 am

Who should I start Jacobi Meyers, Noah brown, kj Osborn

yuh CommentedDec 30, 2023 11:25 am

With Alexander out again, GB may need to triple team JJ, leaving Osborn to have a field day.

Dale Giampapa CommentedDec 30, 2023 1:26 pm

I need to play 2 out of these players please .
Chandler , Pickens , Njigba , Osborne
Thank you

Wallstreet Skeeter CommentedDec 30, 2023 2:06 pm

Pickens and Chandler

Nirav777 CommentedDec 30, 2023 1:34 pm

Mayfield or Love
Aman, Puka, Higgins, Deebo, Hopkins, Pickens, Pick 3
McCarrfey, Achane and Harris Pick 2

Wallstreet Skeeter CommentedDec 30, 2023 2:06 pm

Aman-Ra, Puka, and Deebo
CMC, Achane

Ed Chan CommentedDec 30, 2023 7:07 pm

What Wallstreet said.

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:52 pm


Dianem CommentedDec 30, 2023 3:00 pm

Puka or Aiyuk? Broncos or Raiders?

Nerd CommentedDec 30, 2023 3:04 pm

Puka and Denver. Good luck!

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:52 pm

Same as Nerd

Kud CommentedDec 30, 2023 4:28 pm

Full PPR need 2 of these four: Elliott, James Cook, CEH and Pachecco (if playing). Would like preference if Pachecco either plays or not. Thanks

Ed Chan CommentedDec 30, 2023 7:19 pm

I think you go with Cook and Pacheco, if he plays. If he doesn't, then CEH.

yuh CommentedDec 31, 2023 9:56 am

Yuh what ed chan said

yuh CommentedDec 31, 2023 9:57 am

Oops, wrong thread

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:51 pm

Pachecco and Cook

Jeffrey Herrmann CommentedDec 30, 2023 6:02 pm

Standard league. Need to pick two rbs from these three: Barkley, Taylor or Mostert. Any thoughts?

Ed Chan CommentedDec 30, 2023 7:22 pm

Tough one. I'd lean toward Barkley and Taylor.

yuh CommentedDec 31, 2023 9:58 am

Yes, what ed chan said

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:51 pm

Mostert is out so that should make it easy. Barkley and Taylor

richbower CommentedDec 31, 2023 11:45 am

Use Standard scoring. Mixon or Singletarty art RB?

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:50 pm


Jonathan B Shoffit CommentedDec 31, 2023 11:59 am

Point per rush and point per reception, nanji Harris or De'von Achane?

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:50 pm


PJ Connolly CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:02 pm

PPR Ridley or Zamir White?
Thank you

Nerd CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:06 pm

The rankings have Ridley ahead by a little bit, but I'd play Zamir White against Indy. Good luck!

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:50 pm


yuh CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:29 pm

KC or Philly def?

Nerd CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:49 pm

Close but Chiefs for me. Good luck!

mrock CommentedDec 31, 2023 12:50 pm


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