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Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 17: Trust Gronk and Other QB/TE/DST Fantasy Advice

Rob Gronkowski, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Despite a rough Week 16, fantasy managers shouldn't bench Rob Gronkowski in Week 17

Welcome to the fantasy championship. If you are still reading this, it likely means you're still playing for something (whether that be glory or just avoiding coming in last, either way works).

By this point of the season, you know who to start and who to sit for the most part. However, if you have any questionable start/sit decisions, look at the matchups. Look at who is practicing, and look at who is on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. Also, remember that just because a player comes off the COVID list does not mean that they are back to 100 percent health. Allen Robinson II is a great example of this. Players are expected to perform at high levels, and when they are symptomatic, it's hard to bounce back right away.

Week 17 Positional Rankings: QB I RB I WR I TE I DST I K I Flex


Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Football Team

In the past seven weeks, there has been only one game where Hurts threw for more than 200 yards: Week 15 against Washington. He threw for 296 yards and a touchdown and added 38 rushing yards and two scores. With Miles Sanders (broken hand) out, Hurts may be running the ball more again after only racking up 10 carries for 45 yards over the past two games since returning from an ankle injury. Washington has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks (did you see Dak Prescott last week against this defense?). Ignore Hurts' missed practice on Wednesday (unless it is followed by more missed practices); it's likely just a day of rest.

Related: Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 17 RB/WR Fantasy Advice


Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons at Buffalo Bills

The Falcons face the Bills in Week 17, which is a tough matchup for a quarterback. In the past eight weeks, Buffalo has allowed six touchdown passes and only two quarterbacks have thrown for more than 200 yards. The Bills have surrendered two rushing touchdowns to the position, but that's not really Ryan's forte. In the past three games, Ryan hasn't thrown for more than 250 yards. He only has one touchdown in each of the past three weeks. This isn't a great week to start Ryan.

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Rob Gronkowski, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New York Jets

Heading into Week 16, it seemed that Gronkowski would be the biggest beneficiary of Chris Godwin and Mike Evans being out. He ended the game with two targets. He caught one pass for 23 yards. It just seemed odd that Cameron Brate was the featured tight end. Perhaps it was coverage, perhaps Gronk did something to offend Tom Brady, but odds are they have it straightened out for Week 17. Godwin (IR) is definitely out and Evans (COVID-19) will likely be again too for this matchup with the Jets. Start Gronk this week.

Related: Fantasy Football 5 Up, 5 Down for Week 17


Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys vs. Arizona Cardinals

Schultz had a great game in Week 16. He had nine targets and caught eight of them for 82 yards and a touchdown. However, the Cowboys were on fire and taking advantage of a struggling Washington defense. Things are going to be much tougher in Week 17 when the Cowboys face the Cardinals. Arizona has allowed just two tight ends to score a touchdown all season. The Cards are giving up the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing tight ends, and fantasy managers should not expect Week 16 numbers for Schultz this week.


New England Patriots vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

The Patriots face the Jaguars in Week 17, which is really all that needs to be said. But in case you want more, Jacksonville is the most generous offense when it comes to fantasy scoring for DSTs. New England is seething after last week's performance against Buffalo and will get to take its frustrations out on the Jags. Trevor Lawrence hasn't thrown a touchdown pass in four weeks and he won't have James Robinson (Achilles) in the backfield. Lawrence also may be without his tight ends, as James O'Shaughnessy missed practice on Wednesday with a hip injury and the rest are on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. Not that it really matters either way. Fire up the Patriots with confidence.


Arizona Cardinals at Dallas Cowboys

The Cardinals claimed this spot last week as well, and it was a good call. Against the Colts in Week 16, Arizona managed just two sacks while Indianapolis's offense scored 20 points (defense got a safety) and put up 346 total yards. Week 17 doesn't look much better. The Cardinals face a red-hot Cowboys team that just dismantled Washington this past Sunday night. While Dallas has already clinched the division title, there's still much to play for. So don't expect the Cowboys to just roll over at home. Leave the Arizona DST on the waiver wire.

— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.