NFL 2022 Week 17 Recap
With Damar Hamlin making a remarkable recovery, I felt now is the appropriate time to discuss Week 17 in length. Plenty of teams got eliminated from playoffs, while others are still hopeful to make it. The Packers look hot, and so do the Chargers, while other teams like the Dolphins and Commanders are sputtering out. Let's take a look at the pre-finale week to this miraculous NFL season.
Photo: Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images
Week 18 Power Rankings
Teams to Note
New York Jets (Dropped 3 spots)
With the Jets officially eliminated from playoffs, and no clear answer at QB for next season, they seem to be in disarray after a strong start to the year. The good news is they bring back offensive juggernauts Breece Hall and Alijah Vera-Tucker next season, and hopefully add a veteran QB who may be named Derek Carr.
Pittsburgh Steelers (Rose 2 spots)
Mike Tomlin does it again and somehow keeps the Steelers season alive after a 3-6 start. Kenny Pickett is playing great, Najee has been unstoppable since their bye week, and the defense is playing at a high level. This team may once again sneak into playoffs despite a tough schedule, abysmal offensive play at times, and having all the cards stacked against them.
Tennessee Titans (Dropped 4 spots)
Things are looking bleak in Tennessee. The offense is stagnant, the defense is littered with injuries, and they can't seem put it together in close situations, resulting in L after L. I wanted Malik Willis to be good, but he just doesn't seem NFL ready at the moment, and that's really hindering this team from a potential playoff berth.
Week 17 Awards
AFC Offensive MVP: Austin Ekeler - Los Angeles Chargers
AFC Defensive MVP: Josh Allen - Jacksonville Jaguars
AFC Trench Tyrant: Kevin Dotson - Pittsburgh Steelers
AFC Special Teams MVP: Tommy Townsend - Kansas City Chiefs
NFC Offensive MVP: Mike Evans - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
NFC Defensive MVP: Marshon Lattimore - New Orleans Saints
NFC Trench Tyrant: Chris Lindstrom - Atlanta Falcons
NFC Special Teams MVP: Keisean Nixon - Green Bay Packers
Award Winners to Note
Josh Allen - The other Josh had a great game this past week. He posted an AFC high 9 pressures, which resulted in 1 sack and 3 QB hits. He also forced a fumble and recorded 4 stops, resulting in the second highest defensive grade in the entire NFL with a 92.4 overall mark.
Kevin Dotson - I can't keep talking about Chris Lindstrom, so let's talk about the other best guard from Week 17. On 29 pass block snaps, he didn't allow a single pressure against one of the most versatile interior defensive units in the league. In addition, the Steelers ran for a season high 198 yards, with 141 of those yards coming to his side of the line.
Marshon Lattimore - In his first game since Week 3, Marshon absolutely shined and showed why he's a top 10 corner in the league still. He posted a 93.4 overall defensive grade, the highest mark in the NFL last week. He was targeted 8 times, allowing 5 receptions for 44 yards, while recording a pick six and breaking up another pass. He also dropped an interception, and he posted 6 tackles while not missing a single one.
Photo: Michael C. Hebert/New Orleans Saints
Key Fantasy Players Recap (Week 17)
QB: Desmond Ridder vs Arizona Cardinals
Projected - 11.7
Actual - 5.66
Results - Busted
RB: Royce Freeman vs Jacksonville Jaguars
Projected - 7.6
Actual - 6.9
Results - Pushed
WR: Greg Dortch vs Atlanta Falcons
Projected - 9.2
Actual - 5.5
Results - Busted
TE: Noah Fant vs New York Jets
Projected - 8.3
Actual - 6.0
Results - Busted
D/ST: New York Giants vs Indianapolis Colts
Projected - 6.8
Actual - 15.0
Results - Boomed
K: Riley Patterson vs Houston Texans
Projected - 7.3
Actual - 9.0
Results - Boomed
Week 17 Total: 2 Boomed, 1 Pushed, 3 Busted
Yearly Total: 27 Boomed, 17 Pushed, 28 Busted
Key Fantasy Players for Week 18
QB: Sam Howell vs Dallas Cowboys
For the majority of the season, QBs in their first start do relatively well fantasy wise. Sam was one of my top QBs in this draft class and should do some damage against a playoff bound Dallas team, especially considering how Gardner Minshew sliced and diced them.
RB: Elijah Mitchell vs Arizona Cardinals
Elijah and CMC splits carries last time they shared the backfield, and expect them to do that in a lopsided contest against the Cardinals.
WR: Jameson Williams vs Green Bay Packers
Jameson got a few more opportunities in Week 17, and the Lions will need to lean on him again to keep their playoff hopes alive.
TE: Jordan Akins vs Indianapolis Colts
The Texans have nothing to lose, they're gonna sling the rock all game and Akins will get plenty of targets.
D/ST: Seattle Seahawks vs Los Angeles Rams
Seattle's defense needs to step up to the plate to make playoffs in a divisional game, and the Rams have looked average most of the time with Baker at the helm.
K: Wil Lutz vs Carolina Panthers
Both teams in this game are eliminated from playoffs, so I'm guessing this matchup will have plenty of offensive production, giving Lutz lots of chances to put up points.
Photo: Paul Sancya/Associate Press
End of Year Awards Tracker
Comeback Player of the Year
Most Improved Player
Defensive Rookie of the Year
Offensive Rookie of the Year
Kenneth Walker III
Trench Tyrant of the Year
Special Teams Player of the Year
Defensive Player of the Year
Offensive Player of the Year
Coach of the Year
Most Valuable Player
I won't highlight the whacky AFC playoff picture just yet since the stipulations behind it may not matter. Just know, the Bengals are definitely getting shafted when they had a chance to control their own destiny en route to the #1 seed. Despite that, we should be in for a fantastic season finale to a wild NFL season.