Fantasy Ramble: 2017 Preview

Fantasy football is a here to stay and even if you’ve never partaken it’s an awful lot of fun to play as it’s one of the most common forms of sports gambling. An avid group of fantasy indulgers ourselves, we seek to provide a weekly glance at all your favorite Raider fantasy information. What is currently in store are quick hitting takes on season expectations and weighing in will be myself and our own Erik Watkins.

Mr. Watkins uses FanDuel, one of the larger fantasy football operations, as it allows fans to become general managers. How it works is pretty straight forward, all teams are assigned a hard salary cap and the players have varying weekly salaries based on production. The challenge is building a roster capable of exploiting league wide matchups, while remaining under the cap.


Erik Watkins @squidsportshead

For those of us who enjoy flexibility in our lineups, there’s a lot to take into consideration if you want to hit it big. The Raiders’ offseason moves were FanDuel friendly as there are now several options. Here’s a headstart on where the Raiders should be priced come Week 1.


Derek Carr — $8,000, opens the season against the Titans, a weak defensive opponent but because he is coming off injury don’t expect him to be in the $9-10k elite range out of the gate.


Marshawn Lynch — $6,800, following an injury plagued year with having to come out of retirement but still some good value and potential if he’s 100%


Jalen Richard — $4,800, but only because he’s mainly on the bench. If Del Rio once again opts for a hydratic monster at running back then his value will increase.


DeAndre Washington — $4,000, this is being generous because he only had one significant game last year (24.2 pts in Week 16): not really worth much unless you’re entering a free contest and/or you’re in a pinch.


Amari Cooper — $7,400, coming off a weak late fantasy season where he scored more than 10 points only three times post-bye week 10.


Michael Crabtree — $5,500, this should be higher as he was up to as much as $7,000 last year but with Cooper being the number one receiving option and Patterson coming in, he takes a hit in terms of potential yards.


Cordarelle Patterson — $4,400, only earned more than 8 points three times last year; however, if he wins the WR3 job or is utilized in special packages like in Minnesota, he could at some point tie his $5,300 max from ‘16.

Jared Cook — $5,200, In an offensive scheme that loves tight ends and along with Mychal Rivera in Jacksonville, he’ll be targeted early and often. Don’t expect too much lower but he could be a steal if his opening number starts with a four.


Clive Walford — $4,500, hasn’t changed much since he arrived and for good reason. This may drop even lower if Cook emerges.

Sebastian Janikowski — $5,100, the ageless wonder continues. The distance may not be the same at nearly 40 as it was at 30, but the accuracy is still spot on.


Defense — $4,300, on the lower end of defenses because of the question marks not only from the draft, but also with free agency and signings. Is Aldon Smith ever coming back? Can Khalil Mack maintain his level of play? What about the secondary? This has the biggest potential to rise at least a few hundred over the preseason.

Philip Robinson @chocp3thunder

If you are looking for a more contemporary approach to fantasy football, perhaps, I can be of service to you. While I must admit, I do enjoy the thrill of quick money offered by a week to week league; nothing, tops the satisfaction of winning and cashing in with the team you drafted, week after week.


Derek Carr— Carr’s a definite QB1 for sure and a QB I expect to have an even better year than last. With more weapons to choose from, look for Carr to redline in 2017.

Marshawn Lynch— My mind keeps telling me no, but “Town Bizness” and this o-line keeps telling me yes. A lock at RB1.   

Jalen Richard— Look for the “Pocket Rocket” to blast off in 2017, like him a lot at RB3 maybe RB2.

DeAndre Washington— It’s a crowded backfield in Oakland and he’s sitting in the rear. Keep him in mind for injuries as he should be relegated to the bench.

Amari Cooper— Cooper is an outstanding WR2. Should be an elite WR1 except his first two seasons have been a tad “jekyll and hyde-ish”. First half of the season MVP James Harden-like, second half of season, game-six Harden.

Michael Crabtree— Crabtree could be a WR1 option, his yards fall short of Cooper’s; although he caught 14 TDs in the last two seasons, he should continue to be Carr’s favorite target in the clutch.

Cordarrelle Patterson— Part of a heated depth battle for the third receiver position, I like his physical abilities and him edging Roberts out; however and until he gets to camp, he gets a TBD.

Seth Roberts— The other half of the said depth battle, last year he had a few big catches and quite a few big drops. He’s the incumbent and currently gets the nod for WR3.

Jared Cook— Tight end was an underproductive position for Oakland and Cook is a sizable upgrade. Offensive coordinator Todd Downing is a disciple of Scott Linehan, the tight end is a staple in Dallas and will become one for the Raiders. A solid choice for TE1.

Clive Walford— Walford is on notice. Watch. Whatever you want to call it but Cook wasn’t brought in to simmer on the bench. He should be a bench player at best.

Sebastian Janikowski— Missing two extra points as well as six field goals shows his time is nearing the end. Still a better-than-average kicker, you could do worse than taking a swim with “Sea Bass”.

Defense/Special Teams— Raiders got exponentially better in an area of weakness; the return game. Patterson is the best return man in the game today and averages 30 yards a return and as far as the defense goes, Raiders were second in total turnovers in 2016. With some continuity amongst defenders as well as a shift in coaching staff and a beneficial scheme, the Raiders defense could be a sleeper this year.

The Raiders offense is littered with players who project to be solid-to-exceptional starters at every skill position. Derek Carr is poised to have a phenomenal year; year three saw him emerge as an MVP candidate up until to his week-16 season-ending injury. However, retirement has given Lynch a full year to rest and heal; never having the luxury of an offensive line as good as this, power is his game and power is what the Raiders needed.


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