We close out Week 17 of the 2023 NFL season with a match-up straight from the NFC North as the Green Bay Packers go on the road to play the Minnesota Vikings. This game definitely has the feel of a playoff game. When you consider that both teams come into this match-up at 7-8, the loser likely sees their playoff hopes die. The Vikings have lost four of their last five games and even in that one game they did win, it was just a 3-0 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders. Because of this rough stretch, Minnesota will once again be making a change at quarterback as rookie Jaren Hall will start in this game Sunday night. The Packers also come limping into this match-up having lost two of their last three games and barely coming away with a win last week against the Carolina Panthers. Injuries have mounted up for both teams as well. T.J. Hockenson suffered a season-ending knee injury. Jordan Addison has been limited this week with an ankle injury, so we have some value opening up amongst Minnesota’s pass catchers. Christian Watson and Dontayvion Wicks are listed as doubtful while Aaron Jones, Jayden Reed, and A.J. Dillon were all limited in practice this past week. And on top of all that, the team suspended Jaire Alexander for this game as well. We have a lot to consider for this game and now that the main slate has locked, we’ll start looking at the top NFL DFS lineup picks for Sunday night’s Showdown slate!


Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings

Spread: Minnesota Vikings (-1); Very close to a pick ‘em

Over/Under: 43.5 Points

Weather: This game will be played in a controlled environment.

Notable Injuries

Green Bay Packers

Minnesota Vikings

NFL DFS Showdown MVP/Captain

Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings

Jefferson is coming off back-to-back games with 10 targets, and while the quarterback change is notable, with the injuries to T.J. Hockenson and Jordan Addison, why wouldn’t Jaren Hall utilize Jefferson in heavy fashion? Jefferson has only appeared in eight games this year and yet he’s just 177 yards away from 1,000 on the season. The Packers will not have Jaire Alexander for this match-up which only gives Jefferson another upgrade in this game. Given that Jaren Hall is only priced at $8,400 as a flex option on DraftKings, it’s incredibly easy to correlate Minnesota’s WR1 and his quarterback for this game.

Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers

Jones finally looked like himself once again after taking advantage of the Carolina Panthers weak run defense last week. He didn’t find the end zone, but he did manage 21 carries for 127 rushing yards. The duo of Jahmyr Gibbs and David Montgomery went nuclear on Minnesota last week for 135 rushing yards and three scores on the ground. Jones wasn’t quite himself when these two teams met back in Week 8. Last week was a good sign that he may finally be healthy and can finish the season strong. Minnesota can be a little tough on the ground, but Jones does see usage in the passing game and the Vikings are allowing over five receptions per game to opposing running backs. I’m not going to feature A.J. Dillon in this article. But this game has somewhat of an “all hands on deck” feel for Green Bay and he may have some flex appeal on a full PPR site like DraftKings.

Ty Chandler, RB, Minnesota Vikings

Chandler is coming off a disappointing game against the Detroit Lions where he only had eight carries but salvaged the performance a little bit with a touchdown. It didn’t really have anything to do with Alexander Mattison’s return either. Mattison only touched the ball twice. The lack of volume was simply to avoid even trying to run the ball against Detroit. Green Bay is an entirely different defense. They rank 25th in Rush DVOA and 30th in Total DVOA and with Jaren Hall under center, they might lean a little more on the run in this match-up. The Packers have allowed 13 touchdowns on the ground to opposing running backs on the year and he is a good check-down option for his quarterback as well. I think we can throw out last week’s game and get some exposure at Captain with confidence that he’ll get 15+ touches against a weak run defense.

Jayden Reed, WR, Green Bay Packers

Reed doesn’t carry an injury designation ahead of this game after being a limited participant in practice all week. He missed last week’s game but with Christian Watson and Dontayvion Wicks unlikely to play, it would surprise nobody if Reed saw a minimum of eight targets in this game with some designed runs as well. The Minnesota Vikings run a blitz-heavy defensive scheme and Jordan Love has shown a tendency to feed Reed targets when facing pressure. We’ve seen Minnesota struggle to defend the wide receiver position all year and with Green Bay’s resources a bit depleted, Reed could have a big game as the ninth-most expensive player in the field.

Mid-Tier & NFL DFS Value Plays

Jordan Love, QB, Green Bay Packers

Love has had an exceptional year with 30 total touchdowns and 11 interceptions. Sure, ball security has been a concern at times with the interceptions and eight fumbles. But overall, he’s been serviceable this year and should finish the season with 4,000+ passing yards. The Vikings can be tough to pass on. They blitz at a very high rate and when these two teams met back in Week 8, Love finishes with just 229 passing yards and a touchdown. A similar performance wouldn’t mean he’s locked into the optimal lineup. Love is playing with more confidence at this point in the season with multiple touchdowns in six of his last seven games.

Romeo Doubs, WR, Green Bay Packers

I will defer to our very own, Britt Flinn, for this one. From her Weekly Match-Up Preview series she had this to say about Doubs: “He’s not a heavy target monster, as is anyone in this offense… The Vikings are allowing the 10th-most fantasy points to the wide receiver position, and if everyone else in the receiving corps is banged up, expect Doubs to be heavily featured in this offense.” Now with Reed expected to be a full go, I’m partial towards using him at Captain. He’s cheaper and does seem to be a favorite target for Love. But Doubs has been steady all season long, and while he may only have 89 targets in 15 games, he does have eight touchdowns. Think of him as a poor man’s Courtland Sutton!

Jaren Hall, QB, Minnesota Vikings

Because of how he is priced, I actually do think Hall can be played at Captain. He made a start back in Week 9 but was injured early on while trying to run the football into the end zone. But prior to that he was 5-of-6 for 78 yards and some rushing exposure as well. In his final season at BYU he threw for 3,000+ yards with 30 touchdowns while adding 350 rushing yards and three more scores on the ground. So he’s shown some comfort in running the ball, but he may be limited in this match-up since he was injured in his last start while trying to scramble. At the end of the day he’s still a starting quarterback on a Showdown slate and he’s only $8,400 on DraftKings so he’ll carry plenty of exposure.

Jordan Addison, WR, Minnesota Vikings

If Addison suits up for this game, which it sounds like he will, yes you can absolutely play him at Captain. There’s no T.J. Hockenson in this game so Addison would comfortably be the second option in this passing attack. He already has nine touchdowns this year so the equity is certainly there and he’s flashed that big play upside. Not to mention the opposing defense will likely be keying in on teammate, Justin Jefferson. The one concern with Addison was that he was a limited participant Thursday and Friday so it’s highly likely that we don’t hear anything on his status until Sunday morning. But he gets a big upgrade if he is active. If he can’t go then K.J. Osborn gets a nice upgrade at just $6,400. He found the end zone last week and had seven targets in Addison’s absence. You could even make the argument for Osborn even if Addison is active, but he won’t see many two-wide receiver sets in that case.

Tucker Kraft, TE, Green Bay Packers

Kraft has been outspoken this week about his development from where he was at earlier in the year. Did the injury to Luke Musgrave pave the way for him to attract a larger role? Sure, but don’t tell him that. He has looked better and has four receptions with 50+ receiving yards in three straight games. The Vikings are middle-of-the-pack in terms of how well they defend the tight end position. But we like that the Packers will potentially be without two pass catchers and Kraft has built a rapport with Jordan Love. He really needs to find the end zone to be optimal or have a ton of volume. I can’t quite bring myself to plug him in at Captain in many lineups.

Josh Oliver, TE, Minnesota Vikings

Oliver gets a bump in usage because of the injury to Hockenson. The Packers are actually 28th in DVOA against the tight end position and if De’Vondre Campbell doesn’t suit up then that helps Oliver even more. The Packers even let Carolina’s tight ends go for seven receptions and 80 yards last week. Now the obvious choice is that Oliver would step into a larger role. The Vikings did give him a decent contract in the offseason and he has pretty good hands. But if you need a cheaper option at tight end then you can consider Johnny Mundt ($2,800) as Kevin O’Connell had this to say about him on Friday.


It’s somewhat perplexing that Greg Joseph ($5,000) is more expensive than Anders Carlson ($4,800) on DraftKings. Joseph has returned eight or fewer fantasy points in five straight outings and with Jaren Hall starting at quarterback, there are obvious concerns about how the rookie fares in terms of moving the offense up and down the field. Since Week 9, the Packers have only seen one opposing kicker attempt more than two field goals. Carlson has attempted multiple field goal attempts in eight straight games with some extra points to boot (pun intended). His floor appears to be much safer by far in this match-up. But similar to defenses this is a position of variance and can be difficult to predict, especially for Showdown slates. But the implied total is respectable at 43.5 points and it’s a pick ‘em so I can’t rule out either kicker.

Defenses/Special Teams

The great thing about the Vikings is that few teams blitz more than Minnesota. However, blitzing doesn’t always translate to pressure and sacks with 42 in 15 games. That’s a decent number, but it could be better if we’re being honest. The Vikings also allow 21.9 points per game and 337.3 yards per game at home compared to just 17.3 points per game and 306.5 yards per game on the road. Strangely enough they only have 12 sacks in seven games at home. The Vikings are only allowing 3.6 yards per rush attempt, which is pretty low. So while they can stop the run, I don’t know if they’ll contain Aaron Jones in the passing game. When these teams met back in Week 8, the Vikings did force four sacks and held Green Bay to just 10 points.

Since Week 2, the Green Bay Packers D/ST has returned double-digit fantasy points just twice. They’re incredibly easy to run on which is why we’re upgrading Ty Chandler in this match-up as well. They have just 36 sacks and 16 takeaways in 15 games so they don’t offer a tremendous ceiling. They’ll also be without Jaire Alexander. I’m willing to avoid this play altogether even though Jaren Hall is starting for Minnesota. If he takes the Brock Purdy approach in this match-up, and puts the ball in the hands of his playmakers, then Minnesota can do damage against this defense.

NFL DFS Dart Throw Bargains

Malik Heath, WR, Green Bay Packers

Another cheap pass catcher for Green Bay that likely benefits from certain players missing this game. He’s not my preferred paydown option on this slate, but I do think there’s room for him to get at last five targets if Watson and Wicks both sit this game out. He would likely be the third wide receiver on the depth chart if that’s the case and when both were sidelined last week Heath did see a little more action.

Brandon Powell, WR, Minnesota Vikings

Powell would certainly step into a larger role if Jordan Addison were ruled out. I won’t hold my breath on that front, but Powell did catch three passes on four targets for 53 yards in Week 16. He did play 50% of the offensive snaps once Addison left so we’ll need to monitor inactives or any and all reports leading up to kickoff.

Bo Melton, WR, Green Bay Packers

We’ll need to monitor and make sure he’s elevated from the practice squad ahead of this match-up. If he is, that likely signals that Christian Watson and Dontayvion Wicks are out. With Watson and Wicks sidelined last week, Melton caught four-of-six targets while also having a designed run called in his favor while only playing 38% of the snaps. If he’s elevated, he’s an interesting play that could see some work as a cheap option. Update: Melton was indeed elevated to the active roster.