Here we are: the final week of the NFL regular season and the second week of ESPN Fantasy championship week!
If you're still reading this column, your roster is in very, very good shape. So let's not use this as a week to overthink our decisions: You can fine-tune and set your lineup based on the circumstances you are facing (for example, if you're down a significant margin after the first week of your final, you may have to swing for the fences with a certain player), but you will be relying largely upon your studs.
As always, however, there are a handful of players whose value in the final week of the regular season is not to be overlooked. That's why we're here: to keep delivering you the information you need! And to all those who have read this column at some point this season: thank you. It means a great deal to the team here at ESPN Fantasy.
Without further ado, here is the Week 17 ESPN Fantasy waiver-wire column.
Note: Players rostered in more than 50 percent of leagues are not available to appear in this column.
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers (36.3 percent). What more is there to say about Garoppolo that hasn't been highlighted during his four games as the starter? He's been remarkable in catalyzing a four-game winning streak for the 49ers and just put up 22 points against the vaunted Jaguars defense. He'll most certainly be a viable starting option in Week 17 against the Titans with top-10 upside.
Giovani Bernard, RB, Cincinnati Bengals (49.5 percent). Although Joe Mixon returned to the lineup in Week 16, Bernard starred for the Bengals' backfield. He posted his best game of the season, rushing for 116 yards and a touchdown, totaling 29.6 fantasy points. While Week 16 is a difficult matchup against the Ravens, Bernard is a top-25 or top-30 play for the final week.
Keelan Cole, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars (31.0 percent). While an injury knocked him out of Week 16, if he's able to return for Week 17, he's a wideout on the radar for any size league. He has 99 or more yards in three straight games and three touchdowns in his past four outings. This Jacksonville offense has found life of late, and Cole is a significant part of that.
Blake Bortles, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars (49.4 percent). One way or another, Bortles finds his way to fantasy relevance of late. He had 22.4 points in Week 16, the eighth time in nine games that he has at least 16 points. With a reasonable Week 17 matchup against the Titans, Bortles is another quarterback with top-10 upside.
Eric Ebron, TE, Detroit Lions (43.3 percent). How's this for red-hot? Over his past three games, Ebron has 20 total catches for 210 yards and two touchdowns. Ebron has had some frustrating moments in his career, but it's difficult to find tight ends, putting him on the starter radar for Week 17.
Wayne Gallman, RB, New York Giants (11.8 percent). In three games since taking on a more prominent role, Gallman has made good on his opportunity with three straight double-digit games in points-per-reception scoring. He's an adept pass catcher with 19 catches in his three outings, a role that could persist with the Giants as a reasonable bet to play from behind in a Week 17 matchup with the Redskins. In a deep PPR league, Gallman can be a flex play.
Antonio Gates, TE, Los Angeles Chargers (16.1 percent). With Hunter Henry now on injured reserve, the ever-steady Gates was thrust back into a featured role in Week 16. He delivered with a season-high six catches for a season-high 81 yards and a touchdown. In a must-win game in Week 17 for Los Angeles, Gates is a viable starter at tight end.
Mike Gillislee, RB, New England Patriots (24.3 percent). With both James White and Rex Burkhead out for the Patriots in Week 16, Gillislee got a chance to reassume a role in the New England offense. He found the end zone on a short carry, handling seven total touches for 43 yards and a touchdown. If White and Burkhead sit in Week 17, Gillislee is a deeper-league play with the hope that he again gets goal-line work.
Mike Wallace, WR, Baltimore Ravens (49.8 percent). If you're looking for a wideout who has a reasonable floor of late, Wallace is an option. He has double-digit scoring in six of his past seven games, scoring 9.8 points in the lone game that he didn't reach the 10-point plateau. With a recent injury to Jeremy Maclin, Wallace should stay as a primary target for the Ravens in a Week 17 matchup against the Bengals. He's a flex consideration in a deeper league.