Fantasy WR Rankings Week 17: Who to start, sit at wide receiver in fantasy football

Our Week 17 fantasy WR rankings are sure to see a ton of changes throughout the week thanks to injuries and COVID, so let’s just say this up front: Be sure to build as much depth as possible and have a decent understanding of the potential sleepers deeper in the rankings. You never know who you might need to start, even in the fantasy championship game.

Keenan Allen (vs. Broncos) and Justin Jefferson (@ Packers) are in the toughest spots matchup wide among stud WRs, but obviously, there are zero reasons to bench them. Those of you that have ridden with them all the way to the finals already know they’re matchup proof. Adam Thielen (@ Packers) is much more of a bubble player, while Mike Williams (reserve/COVID) has already been ruled out, so you won’t even have the option of starting him. 

Quarterback | Running back | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

What really matters are the guys in the middle of the rankings who are typically on the start-or-sit bubble. The best streaming options (players around 50-percent owned in Yahoo leagues) include Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Allen Lazard (@ Vikings), Robby Anderson (@ Saints), Kendrick Bourne (vs. Jaguars), Kenny Golladay and Kadarius Toney (@ Bears), Allen Robinson (vs. Giants), Nico Collins and Chris Conley (@ 49ers), Jamison Crowder/Braxton Berrios (vs. Buccaneers), and Emmanuel Sanders and Isaiah McKenzie (vs. Falcons). Each of these players have some of the best WR matchups possible, and while the floors and ceilings vary wildly, there’s potential for each of these receivers to come through. 

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

If you’re looking for the safest guy from that group, it’s probably Sanders or McKenzie since Gabriel Davis (reserve/COVID) will be out and Cole Beasley (reserve/COVID) will have barely practiced if he plays. MVS and Lazard obviously have a great QB and will have the best matchup, but they somewhat limit each other. Anderson has been playing well, while Bourne has been solid most of the season. Golladay, Toney, Robinson, and Collins are total wild cards, but each has some upside in those matchups. The same goes for Crowder if he returns from a calf injury, however with Elijah Moore (quad) also due back, Crowder (or Berrios) is more a PPR-only option. 

Obviously, there are some guys who are over 50-percent owned on the start-or-sit bubble, too, and we think you can roll with A.J. Green and Christian Kirk (@ Cowboys), Michael Gallup (vs. Cardinals), Darnell Mooney (vs. Giants), Van Jefferson (@ Ravens), and maybe, just maybe, Julio Jones (vs. Dolphins). These are all some of the juiciest matchups possible for receivers who’ve had more than a few good weeks this year. Jones, of course, is super risky, so unless you own him in a deep league, you might want to hold off, especially after his disappearing act in a favorable matchup last week.

Guys like Michael Pittman Jr. (vs. Raiders), Marquise Brown and Rashod Bateman (@ Rams), Russell Gage (@ Bills), Jerry Jeudy (@ Chargers), Chase Claypool (vs. Browns), and Amon-Ra St. Brown and Josh Reynolds (@ Seahawks) all have very different degrees up upside, but each of them has real bust potential for Week 17. St. Brown and Brown have QB issues and Pittman had been tailing off before a solid Week 16, but matchups have a big impact on their fantasy outlooks. Meanwhile, Claypool, Gage, Jeudy, and Reynolds have tough matchups and haven’t been productive enough to really trust them in this spot. St. Brown might actually be the safest here, but Pittman and Brown at least have decent floors, too.

We’ve constantly been hammering home the idea that we have to be prepared for everything this week, but it’s the reality of the situation. It’s not going to be fun to lose a fantasy title because of a star player on the reserve/COVID list, so seriously, just take a little bit of time to acquire some decent backups so you can take home the grand prize. The wide receiver position always has plenty of options, even if they are risky.

Note: We’ll be updating these WR rankings as needed throughout the week, so check back for the latest changes and analysis.

​Fantasy WR Rankings Week 17: Who to start at wide receiver

Rankings based on standard, non-PPR scoring

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