Every year we give our premium content members a team-by-team, player-by-player look at the NFL season that was. The coverage will be in-depth, but because the Dynasty Capsule series begins immediately after the regular season, we won’t use it to discuss free agency or the draft. Come see us in early May once Mr. Irrelevant is off the board for another 32-article series giving you the same detailed discussion you’ll see below.
Buckle up dynasty fans, because you’re about to be reminded why our motto is, “There is no off-season.”
Carr cemented himself as the future starter and star of the Oakland Raiders in 2015. He blew away many expectations that he was just an average quarterback, improving in every way from his first season as a pro. Taking away game one against the Bengals, Carr put on a dazzling display in his next eight games. By the end of week ten against the Vikings, Carr had 203 completions in 316 attempts for 2396 yards with 21 touchdowns and just six interceptions – including seven games where he threw multiple touchdowns (four of which where he had three or more scores). In five of those contests, he had more than 300 yards passing with only six interceptions.
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He did regress, as he tallied 147/247 for 1591 yards and 11 touchdowns with seven interceptions in the next seven games. However, Derek Carr’s season was a success in his second year as a pro. He finished the season with 3,987 yards with a 32-13 touchdown to interception ratio.
McGloin has been in a Raiders uniform since his rookie season in 2013. Even though he started a few games that year, he is not considered a legitimate starter. He is entering this season as free agent, but the Raiders will probably have an interest in re-signing him. Even if Oakland decides to pass, he will find work on another team as he is a solid number two quarterback.
It was an interesting year for Murray. Some games he looked like a future first-round choice in start-up leagues, and in others it was quite the opposite. He will be in his third season in 2016, and last year was his first full season as the Raiders’ starter. In 2014, he only had 82 attempts.
Murray blazed through his first three games, scoring in two of them and finishing with 248 yards on 52 attempts (4.7 yards per carry average) while catching 11 passes for 68 yards. He stumbled in the next two weeks against Chicago and Denver (28-88-0 with six receptions). Murray then went on a four-game hot streak. He only scored one touchdown in those four contests but rushed for 342 yards on 64 carries (5.3 ypc). His receptions took a hit as he could only come down with nine balls.
In his last seven games, only two could be considered a healthy start. In fact, those five games were downright nasty. Against Tennessee, Green Bay, Denver, and Kansas City he finished with 195 yards on 70 carries (2.7 yards per carry), no touchdowns and just six receptions. In the other two against Kansas City (first game) and San Diego he had 39 carries for 165 yards (4.2 ypc) and two touchdowns, with nine catches for 49 yards. I expected Murray to have an up-and-down season as he grows accustomed to being the lead back for Oakland.
Neither of the four played a big role in the Oakland Raiders ground game, as only Olaway found his way to the end zone. It was in the air that they made the biggest contribution. Reece led the pack with 30 receptions for 269 yards and three touchdowns. The rest of the crew contributed 23 catches for 265 yards and one touchdown. All four players will be under contract to start the 2016 season.
Cooper came out like a rocket in his first nine games as a rookie. He caught 50 passes for 653 yards and four touchdowns. He had two games where he went for 100+ yards and six games where he caught five or more passes. Then the rookie wall came calling, and he bottomed out the rest of the season.
In the next seven games, he had just two in which he caught more than five passes, and caught just nine total in the other five contests, including one game where he put up a goose egg against Denver. Obviously, his receiving yards nose-dived as well. Cooper finished with 103 yards and zero touchdowns in total from all five games. The other two were more like him. He caught seven passes for 115 yards against the Titans, and in Lambeau Field, he grabbed nine balls for 120 yards and two touchdowns.
There is no doubt that Amari Cooper has all the tools to be a big-time talent in this league, and now that his rookie season is over, be prepared for even bigger numbers next season.
Michael Crabtree was left for dead before the Raiders signed him to a contract. It seemed as though very few teams had any interest in him. He had come off a knee surgery in 2013, and he was already slow before it. Crabtree paid Oakland back in bunches with his bounce back season.
Like the rest of the Raiders offense, Crabtree became sluggish after week nine. He was better than the others, however, as he continued to average around five catches per game, even though he couldn’t break the 100-yard barrier after getting over the century mark three times in the previous nine contests. He had four of his touchdowns in the later part of the season, after getting five in the first half.
Crabtree was able to match his career high in touchdowns with nine, and he also matched his highest reception total at 85. He will continue to be a steady force with Cooper drawing attention away and Crabtree finding the spots in the zone. He is also locked up for three more seasons with the Raiders at a minimum.
Roberts showed some promise as a rookie. He will most likely enter next season as the number three receiver. He finished the season with 32 receptions for 480 yards and five touchdowns. Roberts has great size as he stands at 6’2” and weighs 195 pounds which make him a constant red zone threat.
He came up huge in his biggest game as a rookie. Roberts caught six passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns against Tennessee. He also caught back-to-back touchdowns in weeks two and three against Baltimore and Cleveland. There is no doubting that the talent is there. He will be on the fantasy radar in all leagues and continue to roll with him in your dynasty formats.
Andre Holmes is steady as the Raiders number four receiver as he was passed up by rookie Roberts. Holmes saw his lowest production numbers since he was a rookie and it looks doubtful that he will resign as a free agent by the Raiders. His 14 receptions for 201 yards and four touchdowns is about what to expect if he does indeed re-up with Oakland. Keep an eye on him however as he is a deep threat with good range abilities.
Like Andre Holmes, Streater is a free agent this season. I am about 95% sure that Streater ends up with another team as he spent most of the 2015 season being a healthy scratch. His first two seasons looked promising as he went from 39 receptions for 584 yards with three touchdowns to 60/888/4 his sophomore campaign. I don’t know what went wrong between 2013 and 2015 as he was injured and became a nonnecessity to the Raiders offense.
Jeremy Ross came to the Raiders via the Baltimore Ravens last season and caught nine passes for 88 yards and zero touchdowns. Ross was used mostly on special teams. He is also a free agent, so it is unknown whether the Raiders will find interest in keeping him. I don’t see much use for him in any league unless it’s a very deep one.
The rookie out of Miami, who was chosen in the third round, started the season behind Mychal Rivera, but by mid-season had established a role for himself. Walford saw 39 targets go his direction in the last seven games which added to his early season totals. Walford ended the season with 28 receptions for 329 yards and three touchdowns. He should continue to thrive and could take over the starting position before the regular season opens in 2016. His biggest game was against the Chiefs as he caught five passes for 53 yards. He also scored in back-to-back games when he faced Pittsburgh and Minnesota.
He just may be too inconsistent for the Raiders to rely on for a weekly basis. For instance, he caught six passes for 46 yards against Minnesota, but put up goose eggs against teams such as Cleveland and San Diego, but I will grant him a pass against the tough Jets defense. He only scored one touchdown on the season after scoring four in each the 2013 and 2014 seasons. His yards and receptions were also his lowest of his career. Rivera is in his last year of his contract, and if things progress as it has, he may not be a Raider in 2017.
Smith signed a three-year deal before the 2015 season. He is one of the best pure blocking tight ends in the NFL. Unfortunately, unless your league records blocks, it leaves you with a stat line of 12/70/1 for the season.