Oakland Raiders Week-4 Fantasy Football Preview
Luis Reyes – Sep 29, 2012
This week looks to be a great week in football! A lot of great match ups and a lot of rivalry games so somethings gotta give. Obviously I will be going over Raider players that can produce for your team this week, but on top of that I also added two new parts to this column: Fantasy Sleepers and Duds of the Week.
The intention of this article is to help you guys have the best possibility to win so If we only cover players of the Silver and Black we wouldn't be giving you the full analysis. Hopefully this extra information can help our readers that own fantasy teams get a 'W' in week four, especially now that we are entering the bye weeks.
Slowly but surely Carson Palmer is becoming a fantasy must start. Gregg Knapp is clearly committed to throwing the ball as per what we can tell by Palmer's 42.7 pass attempts per game average. The Raiders haven't been throwing the ball this much since the Rich Gannon days.
Carson Palmer is ranked 8th in passing yards and has thrown five touchdowns to two interceptions in three games. On top of that Palmer has scored over 16 fantasy points in standard leagues every week. That's great production to get from a quarterback in fantasy especially if it is on a consistent basis. Take into consideration that you probably picked up Palmer in the later rounds and your getting a great profit for your investment.
Denver will be a great match up for Palmer. He threw for over 300 yards against them last season, and this season Denver is ranked right in the middle of the pack at 15th in pass defense. Ben Rothlisberger and Matt Ryan both threw 2 touchdowns against them, and Schaub threw for four. Start Palmer with confidence this week.
Denver's rush defense has not been that horrible this season stat wise. They had two real good games against Pittsburgh and Atlanta, but those are two teams that are struggling to get their run game going. Houston on the other hand smoked them for 151 total rushing yards.
With this new blocking scheme you cant really predict what will happen but that run by McFadden last week against the Steelers was really inspiring to see. Also, we cant ignore the fact that McFadden has played incredibly well against Denver in past seasons.
The thing to keep in mind here is that Denver struggled defending Houston's zone blocking scheme, the scheme the Raiders try to simulate the most, so if the offensive line gets its assignments right then McFadden should have a productive game.
Well Brandon Myers has been a decent surprise this season. Nobody really expected much from him but some of us (like myself) really felt confident with what he brought to the table last season.
When you are the only player in all of football with 15 targets and 15 catches for a 100% completion ratio then you must be doing something right. On top of that Myers is the only Tight End that has caught 50 plus yards in each of the three games that have been played. In fantasy that's five plus points easy.
The only thing missing for Myers to make his real splash on the scene is to get one of those catches in the end zone, which is only a matter of time before he does. Denver has given up one touchdown to Tight Ends in all of their match ups this season, so expect that trend to continue this week.
Knapp will definitely keep using Myers as Tight ends have always succeeded under his system (see Zach Miller with Raiders), and Palmer is clearly gaining more confidence and improving chemistry with him. Do not leave Myers in your bench!
Three Sleepers for Week 4
Ramses Barden (WR):
Here is a name that has been sounding off all over the fantasy community. Hakeem Nicks will likely be out for this weeks game against Philadelphia meaning Barden will likely get a few touches. After what we saw last week from him against Carolina you can't help but have great expectations for this receiver. He made the best out of his opportunities last week hauling in 138 receiving yards with 9 receptions.
On the stat sheet Philadelphia's passing defense seems to be doing very well but truth is two of their three games were against anemic offenses (Cleveland and Arizona). When they faced the Ravens they were not as dominant although they still did a good job. Also, the way Eli Manning is throwing the ball any one of his receivers is a possible threat in fantasy.
Lamar Miller (RB):
It's unfortunate to say but most fantasy sleepers rise when a starter goes down. Reggie Bush is questionable for Sunday's game against the Cardinals due to a knee injury, so Miller is probably going to pick up most of the workload this week.
I know the match up doesn't look very favorable because of the way Arizona's defense has been playing, but on the run game they are giving up 106 yards per game. Also, Miami is a run first team so they will be running the ball a lot. Add to that the fact that Miami also has a very strong defense and this figures to be a close game, meaning a lot of touches for Running Backs to manage the clock.
Miller has averaged 5.9 yards per carry in two games as a back up. Even with Reggie Bush active and healthy he still got 9 and 10 touches. Expect a workload of around 15 touches for Miller. Sometimes in deep leagues all you need is a Running Back that gets a lot of touches no matter who he plays, maybe you'll strike gold.
Christian Ponder (QB):
Christian Ponder has quietly been putting together a decent season thus far, yet he still is very underrated in fantasy circles. If you give this guy a shot this week he can put up some very pretty numbers for your team.
Detroit's defense has been pretty bad this season. They've made quarterbacks like Alex Smith and Jake Locker look like Dan Marino and Steve Young. They seem pretty vulnerable to the quarterback running as well and we all saw last week that ponder has some nice moves in the open field.
Ponder has yet to throw an Interception this season and has four touchdowns, not bad at all. Expect Ponder to find holes in the Lions secondary to put some nice fantasy numbers.
Three Duds for Week 4
Shonn Greene (RB):
This is an obvious dud for week four. As a matter a fact anyone that goes up against San Francisco's defense is a dud. It's not like if Greene has been extremely dominant in his previous match ups to even be considered a starter this week.
Greene keeps getting love from fantasy owners because of the Jets high rushing attack, but truth is San Francisco is the best rush defense in the league by far. Keep him on your bench.
Brandon Marshall (WR):
Some might say I'm crazy but I just can't see how Marshall will be productive in this game. Dallas' defense has been unforgivable in the pass game. Jay Cutler has looked plain horrible so far, he is rated last in Quarterback rating, and his offensive line is probably even worse.
I can't blame Cutler for his poor pass protection, but with Dallas' pass rush he should be running for his life all game, so I see it very hard for him to get the ball effectively down field. Strong pass rush and a solid secondary are the worst thing that can happen to a receiver and a Quarterback with a bad offensive line. Which brings me to my next dud...
Jay Cutler (QB):
I think I pretty much mentioned all the reasons why Jay Cutler will have a horrible game in my previous paragraph. I'm sorry Bear fans but that's one of the worst offensive lines I’ve seen in a long time in pass protection.
Cutler will probably be seeing more of Demarcus Ware than any of his receivers in this game. I hope I'm wrong though for Cutler's sake...
Like Raider Nation Times
How Would You Grade the Raiders Live Mock Draft?