Taking A Closer Look At NFL Week 17 Games To Circle For Fantasy, Survivor

Written By Mo Nuwwarah | Last Updated
NFL Week 17 schedule

The NFL schedules have dropped, meaning fans can implement them into strategies for NFL survivor pools and various fantasy football formats such as Underdog Best Ball. Naturally, games at the end of the schedule carry a particular weight. They’ll produce the most decisive money swings in these competitions. Thus, we’ll look at the NFL Week 17 schedule and see which games stand out.

While we only highlight a handful of games on the NFL Week 17 schedule, scroll to the bottom for a full listing of every game, including early NFL odds from online betting sites. These odds can help inform the decisions referenced above.

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Bengals Vs. Broncos

This might not be an excellent spot for those looking for fantasy points. It’s an outdoor game in the Midwest in late December, so it doesn’t take a meteorologist to guess what the conditions might be like. Even in the best circumstances, Ja’Marr Chase doesn’t figure to be piling up points for fantasy glory with Patrick Surtain II lined up across from him.

But survivor players should certainly keep this game in mind. Cincinnati drew a pretty favorable schedule, thanks to finishing last in the AFC North while also drawing the AFC West and NFC East. The Bengals get home games against the Patriots, Commanders, and Raiders during the first nine weeks.

Week 1 against the Patriots figures to be especially popular with the risk-averse. In the week where everyone has the least knowledge, the presumably healthy Bengals at home against a rookie head coach directing either a rookie or journeyman QB screams “free win.”

That schedule means those who can save the Bengals for this spot might find themselves in a lovely circumstance. Getting Cincinnati at low ownership when they’re the biggest projected favorite on the board would bring a lot of expected value.

Buccaneers vs. Panthers

Another of the biggest favorites on the NFL Week 17 schedule, Tampa Bay figures to be in a good spot here. At home against a Carolina team still in the relatively early stages of a rebuild, it would likely take a QB injury for the Bucs to find themselves as underdogs.

Like Cincinnati, Tampa Bay hosts a weak opponent, with Washington coming to town in Week 1. They also get the Raiders at home. Those games should thin out some ownership in survivor pools that reach the endgame.

Fantasy managers and best ball drafters should also be eyeing this game. Playing in Florida figures to bring some of the better Week 17 conditions. Additionally, both offenses could find some success here matchup-wise.

The Panthers focused almost entirely on the offense this offseason as they try to provide a more stable environment for Bryce Young. They didn’t make any significant defensive additions, and arguably, their most talented player, CB Jaycee Horn, has yet to make it to the end of a season unscathed.

Tampa Bay mostly brought the band back from a veteran group that finished 18th in EPA/play allowed. They don’t figure to be lighting the league on fire on that, either.

Steelers vs. Chiefs

At first glance, this game doesn’t appear to have much appeal either in survivor or fantasy. Two solid defenses matched up outdoors in the cold, with the favored team on the road?

In regular survivor, players shouldn’t be excited to roll out a road team in a late-season game here. That’s particularly true of Kansas City, which hasn’t been known to go all-out in recent regular seasons.

However, unless the rules change in the big Circa contest, those players will likely need to pick a winner from a shortened slate. They should be looking at the following matchups:

  • Chiefs at Steelers
  • Ravens at Texans
  • Seahawks at Bears

Barring a QB injury, the Texans vs. Ravens tilt certainly seems like it won’t hold much survivor appeal. The Bears will likely play here as short home favorites, but saving the Chiefs to have them for Week 17 might make sense.

Fantasy-wise, Patrick Mahomes has been comically effective against the Steelers in his career. For whatever reason, Andy Reid seems to have a special knack for outmaneuvering Mike Tomlin’s scheme. In three career games against the Steelers (including one playoff game), Mahomes has averaged 329.3 YPG with an incredible 14-1 TD-INT ratio. More of that will play for any Chiefs you may find yourself scooping up.

NFL Week 17 — Full Schedule With Odds