NFL Week 17 WR/CB Matchups: DeAndre Hopkins vs. Jalen Ramsey, More Shadow Dates
Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Houston Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (10), Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith (50), cornerback Jalen Ramsey (20).
- Week 17s WR/CB matchups feature a potential shadow date between Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins and Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey.
- Seven other wide receivers are likely to draw shadow coverage. We also break down plus and minus matchups.
We’ve been breaking down the top wide receiver/cornerback matchups every week throughout the 2018 NFL season and were finally at Week 17.
Below is a data-driven analysis of the week’s best passing-game matchup, eight potential shadow matchups and an additional nine potential non-shadow matchups. At the end, I’ll wrap up with a quick look at plus and minus matchups.
Matchup of the Week
Chiefs Offense vs. Raiders Defense
Patrick Mahomes’ arm strength and impressive ability to extend plays has enabled each of Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce to have career years. TyFreak has already posted career-high marks in receptions (82), yards (1,378) and receiving touchdowns (11), while the Chiefs’ all-world tight end has also set career-highs across the board and is having one of the best seasons the position has ever seen.
Fantasy’s PPR WR5 and TE1 are as matchup proof as any player in the league. Still, the Raiders have seemingly sold out to stop No. 1 receivers this season at the expense of containing the offense’s No. 2 option. They identified Hill (1-13-0) as the top threat during the team’s first matchup in Week 13, and Kelce (12-168-2) accordingly went off.
The Raiders’ porous secondary could also be without starting cornerbacks Daryl Worley (shoulder, IR) and Gareon Conley (concussion). Sammy Watkins opened up the week with a DNP and should be considered very questionable for Sunday.
Be sure to monitor our Week 17 Injury Report for daily practice participation along with his estimated and official game statuses for every fantasy-relevant player.
Mahomes has largely honed in on Kelce and HIll during Watkins’ extended absence. Overall, Kelce (62 targets) and Tyreek Hill (60) have easily outpaced Chris Conley (28), Demarcus Robinson (20), Damien Williams (20) and Demetrius Harris (14) in six games since Watkins was injured.
Kelce carries a higher median projection and projected ceiling than Hill in our Pro Models with reduced ownership. His +3.1 Projected Plus/Minus mark is the highest among all tight ends. The Chiefs’ tight end has lined up in the slot or out wide on 53% of his snaps this season and is a true No. 1 wide receiver in every which way except for his DFS salary.
The Week 17 Shadow Club
Not many cornerbacks are consistently asked to travel with the opposition’s No. 1 wide receiver, but we can expect the following eight teams to regularly line up across from their opponent’s top receiver in Week 17.