The NFL wraps up the season on Sunday with plenty of playoff implications in Week 17. Two playoff spots are left to be earned, and only two teams have been formally seeded — in the AFC, the Ravens are the No. 1 seed and the Bills are the No. 5 seed. Everything else is still up for grabs.
Given the nature of Week 17, some teams will be going all out and other teams are just looking to get through the weekend without players getting hurt. The Ravens have nothing to play for and are planning to sit several starters. Rookie quarterbacks Dwayne Haskins and Kyler Murray both got hurt on Sunday, so their teams might not want to risk further injury.
This will impact traditional and daily fantasy decisions, but also sports betting decisions. For example, the Ravens opened as a 1-point favorite against the Steelers, but now are 1-point underdogs — and that line could continue to grow. We’ll track it all here throughout the week leading up to the regular season finale.
Steelers vs. Ravens
UPDATE: Mark Andrews and Marquise Brown are expected to sit out the finale, per Adam Schefter.
Lamar Jackson, QB
Mark Ingram, RB (Injury)
Marshal Yanda, OG
Earl Thomas, S
Brandon Williams, DT
Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh announced on Monday that these starters will sit on Sunday when the Ravens host the Steelers, per beat writer Jamison Hemsley. This means Robert Griffin III will start at quarterback and Gus Edwards will likely split carries with Justice Hill at running back.
Mason Rudolph, QB (Injury)
Maurkice Pouncey, C (Injury)
James Conner, RB (Injury)
Rudolph replaced an ineffective Devlin Hodges in Week 16, but Rudolph then hurt his shoulder. He is expected to miss multiple weeks, so he will not play in Week 17. Pouncey’s availability for the wild card round if Pittsburgh makes it is unclear, per Mike Tomlin.
Washington vs. Cowboys
Dwayne Haskins, QB (Injury)
Haskins suffered a high ankle sprain in Week 16, and head coach Bill Callahan said he will not play in Week 17, per beat writer Les Carpenter. Case Keenum will get the start in his place.
Tyron Smith, OL (Injury)
The Cowboys tackle is expected to miss today’s game due to a back injury barring an unexpected good performance in warmups, per Jane Slater.
Update: DeShaun Watson, Deandre Hopkins and Carlos Hyde are active but it looks like DeAndre Carter, Keke Coutee and Steven Mitchell will start at wide receiver, which likely means we won’t see starters at all or for long.
UPDATE: Ian Rapoport is reporting “the Texans won’t take any chances” and are expected to rest several starters.
Bill O’Brien claims he won’t rest any players in the finale, but if the Chiefs win in the early slot, the Texans will have nothing to play for in the late slot. DeShaun Watson looked like he injured his ankle in Week 16, so it still seems a decent possibility he sits the finale.
Jets vs. Bills
UPDATE: Head coach Sean McDermott told the media he wishes he could take out all his starters in Week 17, but they don’t have the numbers to do that, per beat writer Joe Buscaglia. This comment would suggest however that Josh Allen and maybe Devin Singletary, among others will get a break this week.
Buffalo is locked into the No. 5 seed, which means they can rest their starters if they want. Head coach Sean McDermott told the media on Monday “they’re still working through” whether or not to sit starters vs. the Jets, according to beat writer Joe Buscaglia.
Jacobs is doubtful and will not play according to reports. DeAndre Washington will again start with Jalen Richard getting passing down work.
Game day update: With the Vikings sitting their right and left tackles, there’s little chance we will see Kirk Cousins in this game.
The Vikings are locked into the NFC’s No. 6 seed, and head coach Mike Zimmer is weighing his options for resting starters on Sunday. The line has moved a lot for the Bears, suggesting the book thinks Minnesota will rest some starters.
UPDATE: It appears the Vikings will end up resting their starters according to ESPN’s Courtney Cronin.
Leonard Fournette, RB
Jalen Ramsey, CB
Fournette won’t play against the Colts due to a neck injury and the flu. His backup, rookie Ryquell Armstead, should receive the bulk of the work in his place.
Detroit vs. Packers