Strategizing your Fantasy Football lineup after week 1 is when the pot begins to stir beyond just the projections. You finally witnessed the first sample size of the targets, the carries, and the goal line roles. The major FF stars from the Raiders have quite the matchup(s) vs the New York Jets. The Jets are looking like a team undoubtedly drafting in the top 3 of the 2018 NFL draft. I’ll break down 3 of the best FF plays this week for the Raiders and a potential sleeper.
1. Wide Receiver, Amari Cooper –
Say it with me, “Coooooooop!”
Cooper received a whopping 13 targets in week 1 vs the Titans. The reason why I love Cooper this week is not only because of the targets, but more so because of the low completion rate from week one. Cooper only hauled in 5 receptions off of those 13 targets, not very efficient. This accounted for 8 of Carr’s 10 incompletions (including 3 consecutive goal line misses; not what you want from a star WR.
I expect Carr and Cooper to emphasize cleaning up their connection against a lesser opponent Sunday in Oakland. This bodes well for Cooper to a have quick start in the first half to produce his points before the game inevitably gets out of hand. New Raiders OC Todd Downing will want to make sure they clean up what was on tape from the previous game, as “AC/DC” looks to be more efficient.
Cooper is a must-start in all FF league formats.
7 receptions 106 yards 1 TD
2. Running Back, Marshawn Lynch –
“I had hella fun in seattle… but im really from oakland doe.” – Marshawn Lynch
Marshawn Lynch makes his hometown debut in the Silver & Black! How much more of an influence do you need to start him in your league? Even more so after Week 1 when Lynch was given the “Seattle Super Bowl treatment” at the goal line in Tennessee. I can’t possibly see his number not called in Oakland near the “Black Hole”, right? Quite honestly this will be what the whole team wants for Marshawn, to see him shine in his home debut. I expect a smaller touch count than week 1, but enough goal line touches to keep him valuable to start.
12 rushes 82 yards 2 TD
2 receptions 21 yards
3. Team Defense, Raiders –
Times have changed in Oakland. The defense put up an impressive performance against one of the leagues best offensive lines and young quarterbacks on the road. This Sunday the defensive unit is ready to appease the home crowd against an offense that is in complete disarray. The defense is going to take some risks in their pass rush concepts against the vulnerable Jets visiting Oakland. The opportunities for sacks, fumbles and forced turnovers from the defensive unit will be there from the opening snap in a hostile environment.
9 points allowed, 4 sacks, 2 FF, 1 INT, 1 TD INT return
Sleeper: Running Back, Jalen Richard –
AKA “The Rocket”
Marshawn Lynch will get his hometown end zone party out of the way fast in the first half. Then the Raiders will want to sideline Lynch as well as many other starters in the second half. Jalen touched the ball 8 times in Week 1: 5 rushes for 22 yards, 1 reception for 6 yards and 2 punt returns for 5 yards. Nothing too impressive, but compare that to the other back he rivals for touches with in DeAndre Washington and you can see why Richard is appealing as the RB 2 vs the Jets. Washington had 3 rushes for 4 yards and 2 receptions for 18 yards in week 1.
I thought Richard had better vision and movement in the offense and his potential for a huge increase in touches might come to form Sunday. Second string QB EJ Manuel will enter the game at some point and the playbook will be conservative runs and short passes. Those both bode well for the RB 2 in the second half, this is why Richard is a sleeper for an increased role.