Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2012 Fantasy outlooks: Oakland Raiders

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

Change has come to Oakland. It just might take a few years for it to be positive.

The Raiders' organizational structure changed with the passing of owner Al Davis last fall. Reggie McKenzie is the team's first GM since Davis became the principal owner. He named former Broncos defensive coordinator Dennis Allen the head coach -- the first time a defensive-minded coach will lead the Raiders since John Madden in 1978. Fifteen of 19 assistant coaches are either new or returning to the Raiders after coaching elsewhere.

Follow us, Like us, Join us
Want more? Join the discussion on our Facebook page and Google+ and follow us on Twitter for additional insight while interacting with a community geared toward Fantasy Football.

Unfortunately, those are all the major changes the Raiders were actually able to make. Between cap issues and previous trades involving draft picks the team was handcuffed in free agency and the draft. Though they did add some talent -- guard Mike Brisiel, linebacker Philip Wheeler and cornerbacks Shawntae Spencer and Ron Bartell are the highlights -- the team will have to rely on the players they added and got something out of last season.

While that will spell trouble for the defense, that's not necessarily a horrible thing for the offense. Carson Palmer found himself in Oakland after holding out from Cincinnati and will commandeer an offense ripe with young, upstart receivers. Darrius Heyward-Bey began to live up to Al Davis' expectations last season, Denarius Moore showed flashes as did Jacoby Ford. During offseason workouts rookie wideout Juron Criner showed he might be a steal for the Raiders.

But we're not kidding anyone here. Darren McFadden will be the Raiders' primary offensive weapon this season -- so long as he stays healthy. McFadden got off to an amazing start in 2011, totaling 768 yards and five touchdowns in seven games before suffering a Lisfranc sprain that shelved his season. He was a regular participant this offseason and is expected to be 100 percent to start the season. That's good because in his last 20 games he's averaged 88.5 rush yards, 33.0 receiving yards with 15 total touchdowns -- and those stats came with Michael Bush playing alongside him.

Bush is gone from Oakland, opening the door for McFadden to work quite a bit. A 16-game season could yield 1,800 total yards and double-digit touchdowns for McFadden, but another foot injury could be debilitating. Owners will risk a big pick on McFadden in every Fantasy draft, but it's the smart ones who back him up properly who won't feel left out in the cold. Expect to read about McFadden's exploits all summer long -- it might be the best press the Raiders get.

Fantasy Value Chart
Player Draft Day value Estimated round
Quarterbacks
Carson Palmer 12
Running Backs
Darren McFadden 2
Mike Goodson 11
Wide Receivers
Darrius Heyward-Bey 9
Denarius Moore 9
Jacoby Ford ND
Tight Ends
David Ausberry ND
Kickers/Defense
Sebastian Janikowski 14
Raiders DST ND
ND - not expected to get drafted

Sleeper ... Carson Palmer, quarterback
Palmer has only had two 4,000-yard seasons but kept up a pace last year that easily would have had him top that mark for a third time. He averaged 293 yards per start thanks in part to either playing from behind or being involved in shootouts (or both). Oakland's offense is evolving this year; there shouldn't be many hiccups in the transition and Palmer should still be in a position to sling it early and often to a receiving corps overflowing with potential. He's the perfect quarterback to draft in Round 11 or 12 as a No. 2 option and either use when your starter is on bye or facing a nightmarish matchup.

Check out our Fantasy Football podcast!
There is no better source for entertaining Fantasy advice than our Fantasy Football Today podcast. Dave Richard, Jamey Eisenberg and Adam Aizer will help you pass the time as you anticipate Draft Day 2014!
Latest episode | Subscribe today!

Bust ... Denarius Moore, wide receiver
Many people are tying their wagons to Moore, including my colleague Jamey Eisenberg. I've seen Jamey take Moore as soon as Round 7! That's way too high. Some stats from Moore's rookie season are incredible: He had 100 yards or a touchdown in 6 of 13 games and converted a first down or a touchdown on 26 of 33 receptions. But he caught less than 50 percent of his targets and totaled 111 yards in the seven games he didn't have 100 yards or a score. He also got banged up and missed three games last year and pulled a hamstring during non-contact practices this spring. Moore is the ultimate boom-or-bust wideout this season, not quite in the mold of DeSean Jackson and not as flimsy as Devery Henderson. Don't be the guy who drafts him with a mid-round pick -- he'll disappoint you. Heyward-Bey is the much, much safer mid- to-late-round Raiders receiver to target.

Keeper-league target ... Juron Criner, wide receiver
Al Davis might be gone, but the Raiders still chased rookie receivers in the draft. The one they took in the fifth round this year might be worth the pick, however: Criner flashed some impressive speed during spring workouts and made some fabulous catches from Carson Palmer, including a bomb in double coverage. Criner's size (6-foot-3 and 224 pounds) and hands (75 catches for 956 yards and 11 touchdowns as a senior at Arizona) are awesome, and while his timed speed at the combine (4.68 in the 40-yard dash) leaves a lot to be desired, what he showed this spring could be an asset to Oakland if he can keep it up in the summer, fall and winter. Put a star next to this guy's name if you are in leagues that keep players year after year.

Schedule breakdown

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17
SD @MIA PIT @DEN bye @ATL JAC @KC TB @BAL NO @CIN CLE DEN KC @CAR @SD

Raider Nation can play the disrespect card legitimately this season: Of the Raiders' eight road games, five are in the Eastern time zone with 1 p.m. kickoffs. Last year the Raiders went 0-2 in those spots and they haven't won a game on the East Coast with a 1 p.m. kickoff since 2009 (at Pittsburgh). If there's a silver lining, it's that their last six games will provide them with a few chances to win, including the Carson Palmer Bowl at Cincy in Week 12 and a three-game stretch where they stay at home starting the week after. Hopefully McFadden's feet keep him on the field and not in a doctor's office for that part of the schedule.

Training camp topics

2011 Touches Leaders
Player Touches
Michael Bush 256 carries, 37 catches
Darren McFadden 113 carries, 19 catches
Darrius Heyward-Bey 64 catches
Marcel Reece 17 carries, 27 catches
Denarius Moore 33 catches, 5 carries

The race to back up McFadden is officially on! After losing Michael Bush to the Bears in free agency, the Raiders traded for Panthers rusher Mike Goodson and might be on the verge of bringing in another veteran (Cedric Benson's name keeps popping up). Second-year speedster Taiwan Jones is also on the roster. It's imperative that whoever is slated to be the backup is taken in Fantasy drafts with a mid- to late-round pick by the owner who spends a Top-20 pick on McFadden. For now it's Goodson; he totaled 275 rush yards on 59 carries and 125 receiving yards on 16 catches with a score in the only three games he ever started in three years with the Panthers. He's entering a contract year and working with an offensive coordinator in Greg Knapp who isn't afraid to use multiple backs in his offenses.

Knapp also hasn't been afraid to throw downfield, which is good since the Raiders have tons of receiving threats. Heyward-Bey stands out as the most reliable for Fantasy purposes; after he got out of Hue Jackson's dog house last season he connected with Palmer for 541 yards on 37 catches and three of his four touchdowns in seven games. And in those seven games, DHB caught four-plus passes in all but one. He's a lock to end up as a consistent contributor for the Raiders.

Moore should be the other primary receiver, but everything else is up in the air. Jacoby Ford has tons of talent but has been plagued by injuries through his two-year career. Louis Murphy has shown flashes of being effective but even when he was forced into action he wasn't overly effective. Criner could wedge his way into playing time. Watching how the receiving corps shakes out behind Heyward-Bey and Moore will be interesting.

Tight end is also open for the Raiders. They have a raw talent in David Ausberry, a 6-foot-4, 265-pound guy with some speed, but he has almost zilch for experience. Brandon Myers and Richard Gordon will compete with Ausberry for the starting job and a role in the offense. If there's any reason to watch this camp battle, it's because Knapp's offenses have prominently featured tight ends: Four of the last six starting tight ends he's coached have led their teams in receptions and all six have had at least 44 catches. The tight ends involved? Alge Crumpler, Zach Miller and John Carlson. We're not talking about big names here.

And we'll keep not talking about big names as the Raiders' defense comes into focus. A year after losing Nnamdi Asomugha to free agency, the team parted ways with cornerback Stanford Routt. They reloaded with underwhelming options and only have safety Tyvon Branch as a reputable member of the secondary. It gets worse: Pass rusher Kamerion Wimbley also left Oakland via free agency, leaving the team with Matt Shaughnessy (12 sacks) as their premier pass rusher. Simply put, a lot of offenses will "get right" against the Raiders this season, starting with the Chargers in Week 1.

Injury update

Darren McFadden (foot; probable for the start of training camp) ... Denarius Moore (hamstring; probable for the start of training camp).

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter @CBSFantasyFB . You can also follow Dave at @daverichard and on Facebook .

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Giants' Bennett Jackson making transition to safety
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Giants second-year cornerback Bennett Jackson is spending the offseason transitioning to safety. 

"At the end of the day, I’m a DB,’" Jackson said, per the New York Post. "I think my strengths are cover skills, I got good speed and I got good ball skills. The thing it’s gonna take for me to get out there and make an impact is, I just got to learn the defense and really just communicate the calls fluently."

"It is all in front of him," coach Tom Coughlin said. "We think he can cover. He has done a good job of getting us lined up and then we will see how he plays."


O'Brien impressed with Jadeveon Clowney's work ethic
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Texans coach Bill O'Brien has been impressed with the work defensive end Jadeveon Clowney has put in to recover from microfracture surgery in his knee. 

"I've been impressed with the way JD's been working," O'Brien said, per HoustonTexans.com. "He's been out there. He's in early. He's rehabbing. But he's also being able to take part in some of the things that we do in the weight room. He's not able to do all of the things that we do on the field just yet, because of his rehab. But he's on the right track."


AJ McCarron throwing deep for Bengals
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Bengals quarterback AJ McCarron has recovered from the shoulder soreness that bothered him for most of his rookie year. 

McCarron is now throwing deep again. "I feel great," McCarron said, per the Cincinnati Enquirer. "Body feels great and I feel like I'm slinging it better than I ever have, really."


Brooks Reed injured, may miss time at Falcons' OTAs
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Falcons linebacker Brooks Reed suffered a groin injury during the recently-completed voluntary minicamp, per ESPN.

The injury was termed "minor", but it still might keep Reed from full participation in the Falcons' upcoming OTAs, which start Tuesday. 


GM: EJ Manuel on 'equal footing' with Bills' other QBs
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Bills general manager Doug Whaley denied reports that the team is moving on from quarterback EJ Manuel

The team acquired Matt Cassel and Tyrod Taylor in the offseason.

In an interview with Jim Rome, Whaley said, "I look at it this way, in this business controversy sells,. The more controversy that you can drum up then the more intereste people are going to be."

"For us we’re excited about the future of all three of those guys," Whaley said. "It’s going to be a great competition. And we can keep three quarterbacks. So I dismiss that as just someone trying to get something stirred during this down time and lack of media stories for the NFL." 

Whaley said all three quarterbacks have an equal shot of winning the starting job. 

"I look for him to come in and compete and try to take the job," he said. "Everybody has got an equal footing. It’s a clean slate for all four of our quarterbacks. We’re not tied to anybody. We just want the best man to start."


Bengals' Vontaze Burfict may start year on PUP
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict's rehab may not be progressing as quickly as the team had hoped.

Burfict had microfracture knee surgery and initial post-surgery reports said that he could be recovered by the start of training camp. 

This week, the team's website said that Burfict's status was "up in the air" and that a return by the start of the season would be a "tight call".

If Burfict isn't ready by the opener, the Bengals may choose to put him on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. 


So far, so good for Texans rookie CB Kevin Johnson
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) First impressions aren't necessarily important for first-round picks in the NFL. They are far more critical to lower selections and undrafted free agents who desperately need to raise a few eyebrows immediately lest they be back out looking for work.

But whether necessary or not, Texans first-rounder Kevin Johnson is making one heck of a first impression on Bill O'Brien. The clornerback opened some eyes at minicamp.

"This is a guy that's a very quick guy," O'Brien said. "He's a tall guy. He's a guy that has really good transition ability. He's got what I call really good recover transition. If he's getting beat, he can stick his foot in the ground and really make up a lot of ground.

"He's a very bright player. If you ask him questions in the morning meeting, he really has obviously studied the night before. He's working out on his own and doing things to help stay up on material that's being installed."

Johnson believes he needs to do the little things right to make a big impact in his rookie year.

"From the training room to the classroom to the film study, everything is just more detailed," he told the team website. "I'm just trying to take it all in and use everything around here and just get better."


Bears CB Tim Jennings could transition into slot role
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(5/23/2015) Bears cornerback Tim Jennings is "still trying to figure out" where he will fit into the secondary this season, the Chicago Tribune is reporting.

The nine-year veteran, who is entering his sixth season in the Windy City, has 95 career starts and led the league in interceptions in 2012. He is even a two-time Pro Bowler. But he spent significant time as the slot corner in minicamp. That's an unsatisfying role for him that he just might be forced to embrace.

Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio prefers his outside corners tall and physical. Jennings is 5-8, 185 pounds. He might still earn an outside role opposite Kyle Fuller, but do achieve that goal he must at the very least outperform free agent pickup Alan Ball, who better fits the ideal description.

If the words of new coach John Fox are any indication, that's unlikely to happen.

"Dimension-wise, he's built like a nickel corner," Fox said. "He's played it before."

Jennings has started all but three games over the last seven years.


Report: Cardinals' Daryl Washington unsure of NFL standing
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(5/22/2015) Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington is approaching the one-year mark for his suspension though his NFL status is still in limbo. 

But according to a report from FOX Sports 910 in Phoenix, Washington is unsure about his status with the league. He was suspended a year ago on May 30, 2014 for being a multiple offender of the NFL's substance-abuse policy. 

However, he was expected to apply for reinstatement a month ago but did not do so. 

Assuming Washington is reinstated to the NFL at some point he will likely be subjected to punishment under the NFL's domestic violence policy. On March 24, 2014, he pleaded guilty to assaulting his ex-girlfriend. 


Titans' Massaquoi rehabbing shoulder, to miss OTA's
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(5/22/2015) Outside linebacker Jonathan Massaquoi will not participate in the Titans' first organized team activities, per ESPN.com.

Massaquoi, who was claimed off waivers from the Falcons earlier this year, is recovering from shoulder surgery. He had a bone spur removed from the area, but the procedure was categorized as a minor cleanup.

Massaquoi recorded 22 tackles in 15 games with Atlanta last season.


 
 
 
Rankings