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 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.”
While the Oakland Raiders as a whole have some significant draft picks to build with in 2019, things truly could not be any lower for Carr after a rough 2018 season. Carr currently holds an ADP of 209.5, which is his lowest ranking since 2014 when he was drafted into the league. He is currently the 29th quarterback being taken off the board in dynasty startups, which is why he is an excellent buy low option right now.
Although he faced a variety of injuries in 2018, Carr managed to play in all 16 games, putting up some surprisingly impressive numbers. He threw for 4,049 yards, 19 touchdowns and just 10 interceptions – the second-lowest mark of his career. Nothing quite jumps off the board, but despite being sacked 51 times in 2018, he still managed to put the highest completion percentage of his career (68%).
While owners will question the direction of the Raiders and the playing ability of Carr; he is just 27 years-old with a lot of football left in the tank. I believe in Jon Gruden’s ability to make the Raiders contenders once again in the next two-three years and Carr should be under center for those seasons.
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The hopes were high for McCarron after being acquired by the Buffalo Bills and landing an opportunity at the starting job. I, along with many dynasty owners had long awaited the release of McCarron from Cincinnati and believed he had starting quarterback potential.
I was wrong.
While I still believe in his potential to be a starting quarterback in the league, I have less faith that he will even get that opportunity in Oakland after only appearing in two games and completing one pass.
He’s a great buy low candidate to stash in super-flex leagues, but I wouldn’t waste my time acquiring McCarron in any other league formats.
The Raiders signed Peterman to the practice squad in December, and if we have learned anything in the last two years, it is: do not acquire Nathan Peterman. He obviously has potential in the eyes of coaches but has yet to display anything on the field. He is best left on waivers in all formats.
Lynch is a free agent this off-season, but if he has any inkling of wanting to play in 2019, the Raiders would be silly not to re-sign him for another year… right?
Right! Despite his age and growing injury issues, Lynch has still proven to be one of the league’s most effective backs. In weeks one-six of 2018, Lynch rushed 90 times for 376 yards (311 after contact) and three touchdowns. His efficiency was off the charts for his age and he really gave the Raiders a needed boost in the backfield.
It would appear that Oakland will invest in a running back in the draft, but I don’t foresee them taking one in the early rounds of the draft. If Lynch is on your waivers, add him for the off-season. What have you got to lose? He could return for his 12th season and be a great RB2/3 in 2019.
Martin surprised many owners in 2018 after proving to the league that he still has something left in the tank. He rushed just 172 times but averaged 4.2 yards per carry, finding the end zone four times and totaling 723 yards.
The numbers may not jump off the page from a fantasy perspective, but across the board, Martin put up the third-highest percentages in his career and did so on a limited number of carries.
While the statistical numbers are impressive for his age, what I am concerned with are the limited number of touches he saw despite being tagged as the RB1 after Lynch went down.
He did enough to earn himself another contract in 2019, but I can’t imagine the Raiders would sign both Lynch and Martin to new deals together. He holds an ADP of 205.83, and could find himself in the same role next year, so make sure you add him if he is available.
Richard proved to have PPR value in dynasty leagues, catching a surprising 68 passes in 2018 and leading the entire team in receptions. He averaged nearly 5.0 yards per carry on the ground, but was only given 55 touches compared to the 81 targets he received through the air.
What hurts his value most is his lack of ability to turn his opportunities into touchdowns. He has only scored three touchdowns in his career while losing four fumbles in that same time frame. Unless Lynch and Martin do not return to Oakland, it would be hard to see Richard having any consistent fantasy output moving forward.
Richard’s ADP has been climbing since Lynch went down with an injury early in the 2018 season. However, it remains uncertain where Richard will end up this off-season, which could limit his value going into the 2019 season. He currently holds an ADP of 162.83, and I would suggest holding off on buying because his price should drop before 2019.
Washington dealt with a knee injury for the first half of the season. Upon return, he carried the ball only five times or more in two of the eight games that he appeared in. While he is signed through the 2019 season, it is clear that Richard would be the clear favorite as a third-down back.
As his value decreases, so will his opportunities within the Raiders organization. I would not be surprised to see Washington get cut this off-season in hopes of rostering some younger potential in the backfield.
Warren gave Raiders fans a glimpse of hope for the future when he tore it up on the field during the 2018 preseason. In line to make an impact in the rotation and potentially even win a starting job, those dreams sailed quickly when he was sidelined for the season with a knee injury.
Given the Raiders lack of both talent and depth in the backfield right now, he is one of my favorite buy-low candidates especially as he recovers from a knee injury this off-season. His ADP is rising consistently and currently sits at 191.50. Don’t wait to make a move for him: it would be better to buy now and stash rather than have to pay a pretty penny in the future.
If the backfield shapes up in his favor (i.e. Lynch and Martin do not return), Warren could be the favorite to win the starting job in 2019 if all goes well with his recovery.
At 6’2”, 250 pounds, this is the combination of speed and power he displayed in college.
From a dynasty perspective, Nelson is on his last legs in fantasy football. Reports circulated late in the 2018 season that Nelson had decided to walk away from the Raiders organization and retired, but in the end, he finished out the season and plans to play one more year with the Raiders in 2019.
Aside from a lack of touchdown production, Nelson put up some surprisingly good numbers given the state of the Oakland offense, and his age. He caught 63 passes for 739 yards, including three touchdowns. While his numbers were nothing like his prime years in Green Bay, he did have the highest catch percentage of his career at 71.6% which still shows his great hands and ability to get open.
His ADP rank currently rests at 204.00 with owners gladly taking him in the 17th round. This is a good spot for Nelson to be in. I think he outperforms expectations in 2019 with an improved offense, but his years are limited.
Ateman scored all of his fantasy points in the final seven games of the 2018 season, catching 15 passes for 154 yards and one touchdown. He is some moderate potential moving forward, but it remains unclear how involved he will be in the passing attack in 2019.
At 6’4”, 216 pounds, Ateman poses as a huge threat, especially in the end zone, but he lacks the true speed and agility to get open a majority of the time. He spent most of the season on the practice squad before being called up, but the Raiders may have seen enough of him to keep him on the field.
With an ADP of 240.67, Ateman is available in a lot of dynasty leagues right now. His upside is limited based on his physicality, but he shows great knowledge and ability to make plays. If you haven’t done so already in your deep dynasty leagues, add him and see what direction Ateman goes in 2019.
Roberts put up some of the best numbers of his career in 2018 with the Raiders, but unfortunately, it still wasn’t enough to make much of a fantasy impact. Due in large part to the befuddling moves that Oakland made in the off-season, Roberts was able to see some opportunities come his way and he made the most of them. He caught 45 passes for 494 yards and two touchdowns.
The Raiders will certainly improve upon what was a tumultuous year in 2018, which means back to just being a “role” player for Roberts in 2019. I don’t expect him to be anywhere near matching his production, meaning he can be left off your rosters.
At 32 years old, LaFell only saw action in four of Oakland’s 2018 games. The remainder was spent on IR with a severe Achilles injury. In the four games, he caught 12 passes for 135 yards and two touchdowns. While he couldn’t produce due to injury, he did show great production in the games he was healthy.
Despite all that, LaFell isn’t contracted with the Raiders in 2019, and I doubt they would fill a roster spot with him as he continues on long recovery back toward playing again.
For those who didn’t know, Cook found the fountain of youth in 2018 and for many was a league-winner in TE-premium leagues. In his tenth NFL season, Cook put up the best fantasy numbers of his career. For some owners, it was a dream come true, while others could only watch in agony wishing this was the Jared Cook of years prior.
He led the Oakland offense with 68 receptions for 896 yards and six touchdowns, his previous high being five touchdowns in 2013. It was the first time in his career he saw over 100 targets and Cook should be in line for a nice payday as he enters free agency this off-season.
His ADP was as high as 109.5 in November and has since dropped to 167.33 in January most likely because of his age and career statistics. While this season may be an outlier on the scale, it certainly was an enjoyable one for Raiders fans.
With the huge need for reliable tight ends in the NFL, I can’t imagine Cook returns to Oakland, which will be a huge loss for the Raiders.
Statistically, Smith saw some of the lowest usage in his career (134 snaps) but most would agree he made the most of every catch. The eight-year veteran caught ten of his eleven targets for 73 yards and three touchdowns.
While it was the most points scored in his fantasy career, his snap count is nothing we can rely on and we shouldn’t expect them to increase moving forward into 2019. He should be left alone on waivers.
Carrier has not been able to put forth a fantasy-relevant season in any of the five he has played and I don’t foresee that changing for the remainder of his career. He is a potential free agent this off-season, but I imagine he’ll play out the remainder of his three-year contract.
Waller simply has not been able to get himself on the field enough to make an impact within the Raiders’ offense. He caught 100% of his targets for a total of six catches, but it simply isn’t enough to rely upon moving forward.