Fantasy Football

2021 Fantasy Football Week 17 Waiver Wire


This is it, fantasy footballers. If you are reading a waiver wire piece heading into Week 17, that means you have done something right and are heading into your championship matchup.

It’s sure to be another week filled with last-minute inactives, COVID protocols and heroic performances from unsung heroes.

If you are holding onto FAB dollars, you can’t take it to next year, so spend what you need to build the best roster you can.

And if a player can’t help you win a championship this week, they can be dropped to make room for someone who can.

The 2021 Fantasy Football Week 17 Waiver Wire will try to focus on players rostered in under 35% of Yahoo leagues.

2021 Fantasy Football Week 17 Waiver Wire

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Waiver Wire Targets

Trey Lance, QB, San Francisco 49ers

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It may have taken 17 weeks, but it just might be Trey Lance’s time in San Francisco. Jimmy Garoppolo is dealing with a torn ligament and a fracture in his right thumb which puts him in jeopardy for Week 17.

Most of you by this point (88%, in fact) bailed ship on Lance as it became clear he would not be the starter this year. But now is the time to open up the wallet for an enticing matchup against the Houston Texans.

The Texans allow the fourth-most passing yards per game to quarterbacks over their last three games (259.0) and continue to let their opponents just gain yards all over the field.

They rank 30th on the year in opponents’ yards per game allowed. You may have also heard Trey Lance likes to run. Houston allows the second-most rushing yards in the NFL this season including the second-most rushing touchdowns allowed per game (1.7).

In his one and a half games he played earlier this season due to a Garoppolo injury, Lance produced 349 passing yards, two passing touchdowns, 23 rushing attempts, and 130 rushing yards.

If you somehow made it to the finals and need a QB, Lance is your ticket to the championship.

Other options: Justin Fields, Chicago Bears (23% rostered) Davis Mills, Houston Texans (7% rostered)

Rex Burkhead, RB, Houston Texans

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For those lucky enough to start Burkhead in their semifinal matchup in Week 16, they were handsomely rewarded with 149 rushing yards and two touchdowns against the hapless Chargers rush defense.

That number can’t be too high, however, because he is unrostered in 86% in leagues heading into waivers this week.

That number is sure to at least be cut in half as the Texans committed 22 of their 35 rush attempts to Burkhead and he looks to have very little competition again this week with David Johnson ruled out.

The 49ers allow the sixth-most rushing touchdowns in the league this year and the Texans suddenly have a competent offense these days run by Davis Mills.

They have scored 84 points in their last three games, which includes the 12-most rushing attempts per game in that stretch (29.0).

Burkhead’s greatest asset going into the championship week is he will be featured as a full-time back and likely be playing in a game with a high total. Bid with confidence here.

Boston Scott and Jordan Howard, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

Miles Sanders fractured his hand on Sunday and now will miss at least Week 17 as the Eagles scratch and claw their way into a potential playoff spot.

After Sanders was hurt after seven carries, Howard handled nine carries and four targets while Scott managed 12 carries and no targets.

Throughout the times Sanders has missed this season, the Eagles seem to favor Howard. In Weeks 8-11, Howard averaged 13 rushing attempts per game and scored two short touchdowns.

He may not get another four targets again (those targets in Week 16 were his first of the year), but he should be in line from whatever goal-line work is left that Jalen Hurts does not steal.

Scott theoretically is the pass-catching back with Sanders out, but it looks like he has competition from Howard and Kenneth Gainwell there.

If you must choose one, I would put in a claim for Howard and hope that Washington’s abysmal rush defense from the last three weeks (156 yards allowed per game) shows up in this one and allows Howard to run free.

Dare Ogunbawale, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

With no Travis Etienne and now no James Robinson, the Jaguars don’t have much choice than to turn to Dare Ogunbawale in this week’s matchup against at the New England Patriots.

If you’re going to throw a dart at Ogunbawale, you would have to be absolutely desperate as he will face a daunting task up against the Patriots in Week 17.

He did pick up 17 of the 19 running back carries after Robinson left on Sunday, but that was against the Jets while the Patriots are a whole other story.

New England has allowed a league-low five rushing touchdowns this season. They do allow a favorable 4.5 yards per carry to backs on the year, but essentially shut them out when they get into the red zone.

Even though Trevor Lawrence hasn’t thrown a touchdown since Week 12, the Jaguars are still running the ball only 34% of the time the last three games, and will likely be trailing in this upcoming game as well.

With Ogunbawale, you are just counting on volume and I would prioritize the other backs on this list first before reaching for Dare.

Other options: Derrick Gore, Kansas City Chiefs. Duke Johnson, Miami Dolphins.

Allen Lazard, WR, Green Bay Packers

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Marquez Valdes-Scantling had a breakout game in Week 15 only to be forced to miss Week 16 due to COVID protocols.

But his loss was Lazard’s gain as the young receiver out of Iowa State saw five targets, good for 45 yards and a touchdown against one of the top pass defenses in the league.

Now, Green Bay’s focus shifts to one of the worst pass defenses in the league: the Minnesota Vikings.

Minnesota allows the sixth-most passing yards per game, the eighth-most passing touchdowns per game, and – most importantly – the most fantasy points per game to wide receivers this season.

Lazard is working on a streak of at least five starts with four or more targets per game and he now has three touchdowns in his last six.

If MVS misses again, Lazard becomes an easy WR2 or WR3 play in Week 17. If MVS is in, Lazard will still be in play as a Flex considering this game opened with a 44.5 point implied total and has already been bet up to 48 in many books.

Isaiah McKenzie, WR, Buffalo Bills

With Gabriel Davis and Cole Beasley both out of the game against the Patriots, it was McKenzie who went absolutely nuts on Sunday, securing 11 of 12 targets for 125 yards and a touchdown.

McKenzie clearly wasn’t on any fantasy squads to help them get to the championship, but he certainly could help bring home the trophy if Beasley and Davis are out again.

Both of those receivers tested positive to COVID and both are unvaccinated. Their availability for Week 17 does not look good right now.

If they can not go again, McKenzie should play somewhere around the 85% of snaps he saw on Sunday, and will be heavily involved in the game plan against an Atlanta defense that gives gifts to opposing wide receivers like it’s Christmas.

They allow the fifth-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers (24.9 per game) and have given up the third-most receiving touchdowns this year (18).

Other options: Kadarius Toney, New York Giants. Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers. K.J. Osborn, Minnesota Vikings.

Foster Moreau, TE, Las Vegas Raiders

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You may not believe it because he has been overshadowed by some massive tight end performances, but Foster Moreau has the sixth-most targets among all tight ends the last three weeks.

His 18.4% target share is top ten, and only five tight ends have more receptions in that span.

Now, there are some rumblings that Darren Waller might try to practice and make a return this week, but that is just wishful thinking at this point and Moreau plans to play a full complement of snaps again in Week 17.

That’s an area where Moreau has really separated himself from the pack at tight end. He has played at least 85% of the snaps in five straight weeks.

The Indianapolis Colts allow the fourth-most fantasy points to tight ends including the most receptions (98) and yards (1004) to the position.

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Other options: Cole Kmet, Chicago Bears 

Thanks for reading the 2021 Fantasy Football Week 17 Waiver Wire. Make sure to check out more Fantasy Football content.

About Ryan Kirksey

Proudest husband and dad you will ever find. In my week I split my time working in higher ed, grinding DFS and season-long content, collecting silver age comics, studying behavioral economics, and drinking coffee. Astros apologist. Team Terry #McSoarin

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