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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

  1. Saquon Barkley

  2. Derrick Henry

  3. Christian McCaffrey

Most Improved Player

  1. Justin Fields

  2. Geno Smith

  3. Tua Tagovailoa

Defensive Rookie of the Year

  1. Sauce Gardner

  2. Kayvon Thibodeaux*

  3. Tariq Woolen

Offensive Rookie of the Year

  1. Brock Purdy

  2. Kenneth Walker III

  3. Garrett Wilson

Trench Tyrant of the Year

  1. Jason Kelce

  2. Chris Lindstrom

  3. Tristan Wirfs

Special Teams Player of the Year

  1. Tyler Bass

  2. Daniel Carlson

  3. Brett Maher

Defensive Player of the Year

  1. Nick Bosa

  2. Chris Jones*

  3. Micah Parsons

Offensive Player of the Year

  1. Tyreek Hill

  2. Josh Jacobs

  3. Justin Jefferson

Coach of the Year

  1. Doug Pederson

  2. Kyle Shanahan*

  3. Nick Sirianni

Most Valuable Player

  1. Josh Allen

  2. Justin Jefferson

  3. Patrick Mahomes


Final Notes:

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.

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