NFL Teams Resting Starters in Week 17: How Texans’ Decision Is Moving Odds vs. Titans
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4).
- Which NFL teams are resting starters in Week 17 as the playoffs loom? According to a recent report, the Buffalo Bills join a growing list of playoff teams that are expected to not play some key contributors in Week 17.
- Below, we have the latest news on the Ravens, Texans, Vikings, Bills and more, in addition to how teams' decisions are impacted the latest betting odds posted in the market.
Week 17 introduces a slew of new factors to weigh when betting the NFL.
Some playoff teams will rest starters. Others with postseason hopes still hanging in the balance will have increased motivation. And, after 15 regular-season games, there are plenty of injuries to monitor.
To make it a little easier on you, we’ll be tracking which playoff teams are resting (or not resting) starters as well as injuries throughout the week. You’ll find the latest updates first.
Report: Bills Will Rest Several Starters
The Buffalo Bills are locked into the No. 5 overall seed, so it’s not a surprise to hear that they’ve decided to rest a few of their starters against the New York Jets on Sunday.
According to Ian Rapoport, the following players will sit out: WR Cole Beasley, WR John Brown, RB Devin Singletary, CB Tre’Davious White and TE Dawson Knox.
Oddsmakers had been expecting this all along. The Bills opened as 5.5-point favorites and were down to a pick’em as of Sunday morning.
Report: Watson and Hopkins to Sit for Texans
Earlier this week, Texans coach Bill O’Brien made a bold proclamation that he wouldn’t rest his team’s starters, despite being effectively locked into the 4-seed. That news caused the spread to bottom out at Titans -3 at Houston.
Well, turns out that was nothing but a lie, as Aaron Wilson from the Houston Chronicle reported late Saturday night that the team is expected to sit QB Deshaun Watson, WR DeAndre Hopkins and WR Will Fuller, among others.
AJ McCarron will start in Watson’s place at quarterback.
The line is now as high as Titans -7.5 around the market, as Tennessee needs to win to get into the playoffs.
Ravens Resting More Starters
In addition to quarterback Lamar Jackson, running back Mark Ingram and safety Earl Thomas, the Ravens will also rest tight end Mark Andrews and wide receiver Marquise Brown.
Andrews is dealing with an ankle injury, while Brown is sick. The Ravens, who have the No. 1 seed in the AFC locked up, are hoping an extra week off will help get them healthier for the Divisional Round.
Vikings Officially Resting Starters
As was previously reported and has now been confirmed: The Minnesota Vikings will rest QB Kirk Cousins, RB Dalvin Cook and LB Erik Kendricks on Sunday against the Chicago Bears.
The news flipped the Vikings from being a 7-point favorite earlier in the week to now being a 3-point underdog.
The Vikings are locked into the NFC’s 6-seed.
Ravens Resting Lamar Jackson vs. Steelers
On Monday, Baltimore announced it would not start Jackson, Mark Ingram, Earl Thomas, Marshal Yanda or Brandon Williams against the Steelers on Sunday.
The Ravens already locked-in the AFC’s No. 1 seed, so with a first-round bye and home-field advantage, it makes sense to turn their attention to preparing for the Divisional Round.
The Ravens moved from 1-point favorites to 1-point underdogs following the news.
Week 17 NFL Injury Report
Looking for the latest on potentially impactful injuries? Justin Bailey is tracking the latest news and practice participation for key players throughout the week: