Last updated: December 27th at 3:06pm ET.
Team Totals: Broncos 22, Raiders 19
Even as the Raiders’ postseason odds are realistic – they need their own Week 17 victory, Houston to beat Tennessee, Baltimore to upend Duck Hodges’ Steelers, the Colts to outlast the Jags, and at least one of New England (vs. MIA), Detroit (vs. GB), Chargers (@ KC), and Chicago (@ MIN) to win – this is a sneaky letdown spot for Jon Gruden’s club on the road facing a dangerously prideful Broncos team that’s won three of its last four and is 6-5 following an 0-4 start.
Should Josh Jacobs (broken shoulder, leg surgery) be unavailable on Sunday, the Raiders’ top Week 17 fantasy play would become DeAndre Washington, who out-touched Jalen Richard 45 to 18 in Jacobs’ Weeks 14 and 16 missed games, out-snapped Richard 79 to 48, and flashed game script-proof capability by running 38 pass routes to Richard’s 30 in those two affairs. The Broncos do not present an overwhelmingly favorable or unfavorable matchup for Washington, but his usage appears bankable as a 20-touch candidate certain to be involved in the passing game should Jacobs miss a third week.
UPDATE: NFL Network reported Friday that Josh Jacobs is indeed unlikely to play at Denver.
All signs point to the Broncos being up for playing spoiler at home versus one of the NFL’s worst defenses, keeping all of their usual suspects in DFS play. As Denver is favored by three at home, this sets up as a positive-script scenario for Phillip Lindsay, who’s cleared 18 touches in three of his last four games.
The Broncos’ top pass-catcher play is bounce-back candidate Courtland Sutton. Sutton managed 41 scoreless yards on five receptions in Week 16’s win over Detroit while encountering Darius Slay for most of the game. Yet Sutton has been a volume hog with Drew Lock under center – drawing ten targets in consecutive weeks – and torched Oakland’s secondary (7/120/0) when these teams met in Week 1. On the season, only six NFL teams have allowed more fantasy points to wide receivers than the Raiders.
Score Prediction: Broncos 24, Raiders 20