Fantasy Football Week 17: Early Advice for Your Roster

As we did last week, here is one matchup per position which you will want to stay well clear of.

Russell Wilson vs. St. Louis Rams

The Rams have played inconsistently on defense but this is more about Wilson than the defense. 

Over the past three games, Wilson has topped 200 yards just once—and on that occasion by just six yards—and thrown three interceptions on top of just three touchdowns.

Not shockingly, the team has dropped two out of three of those games—one at home.

Wilson has not played well recently and if the Rams can play tough—and they will come to play hard—he’ll struggle.

The quarterback and the matchup should give you pause this week—find a better option.

Alfred Morris at New York Giants

Last week was the third straight game where Morris ran for under 100 yards. He did score a touchdown though—his first since Week 13.

Meanwhile, the New York Giants held another running back under 100 yards—this time Joique Bell.

Last time these two met, Morris had just 26 yards on the ground and 43 yards once you added in the receiving. He did score a touchdown but that overall number—that’s not encouraging.

The Giants may be a dumpster fire but one thing they do is shut down running backs.

They have allowed two 100-yard rushers in 16 games—DeAngelo Williams in Week 3 and Ryan Mathews in Week 14.

Beyond that it’s been a difficult time getting that 100-yard bonus if your league offers it.

Aside from Morris, the Giants have DeMarco Murray, Eddie Lacy, Rashad Jennings, LeSean McCoy (TWICE), Adrian Peterson, Matt Forte, Jamaal Charles, Marshawn Lynch and Bell under 100 yards.

You probably be in a position to bench Morris outright but he shouldn’t be your No. 1 starter this week if you can avoid it.

Roddy White vs. Carolina Panthers

The veteran Falcon is coming off a huge game against the San Francisco 49ers during which he caught a dozen balls for 141 yards and a touchdown.

Don’t expect that this week against a tough Carolina defense.

Matt Ryan has had some issues with his offensive line, and while he was only sacked once against the Niners, he was hit five times altogether.

He’s going to have a hard time getting the ball out. He won’t have time to let White get open from some tight coverage, which may limit White’s production.

Stay away from White, or if that’s not possible, limit his impact by starting him in a lower slot.

Antonio Gates vs. Kansas City Chiefs

If you’re still clinging to Gates as a potential starter this week, see if the waiver wire is open.

Because even if he wasn’t facing a tough defense which is looking to rebound from an embarrassing loss at home to the Indianapolis Colts, his production doesn’t warrant much faith.

Gates has just three touchdowns this season—none since Week 11—and hasn’t caught more than five balls or more than 50 yards since then (his one 50-yard day coming against the New York Giants and landing exactly on 50 yards).

His targets aren’t high either—just six over the last two games.

Gates is a guy you might play because the name still holds some glamor—but he’s nobody to trust your fantasy championship to.

Andrew Garda is a member of the Pro Football Writers Association. He is also a member of the fantasy football staff at and the NFL writer at You can follow him at @andrew_garda on Twitter.

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