2020 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview

by Mike LaPlant
2021 Fantasy Football Targets and Touches Week 3

New year, new city, and a brand new-ish team. The Las Vegas Raaa-iders, it has a nice ring to it if you ask me. Let's take a deeper look into them in the 2020 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview.

Coming off a sub-par 2019 season finishing 3rd in the AFC West with a record of 7-9; the team and fans now look forward to its new 1.9 billion dollar stadium to get into and win some games. Going into Gruden’s 3rd year coaching, he's looking to finally get his team into the playoffs whether it be on the back of Derek Carr or the newly signed Mariota.

If the quarterbacks can’t get it done for the team maybe the one silver lining they can fall back on is 2nd-year back Josh Jacobs out of Alabama. He showed many flashes of potential in his rookie year carrying the team to a couple of wins.

In fact, Jacobs is one of the few players on the Raiders who I don't think will regress this year. I predict he has an even stronger sophomore year than his rookie year. Thanks to coach Gruden’s old school ground & pound offense the sky's the limit for Jacobs in fantasy value barring any injuries.

2020 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview

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Derek Carr finished QB14 with 21 touchdowns which was 19th in the NFL. He also finished with 4,055 passing yards which landed him at 8th in the league.

Top ten in yards is a respectable line, but to crack QB10 numbers he is going to need some more explosive plays down the field for big yards. Believe it or not, he’s pretty efficient in the red zone boasting a 15:2 TD:Int ratio with a 58% completion rating.

With the Raiders drafting Henry Ruggs III with the 12th overall pick in the 2020 draft they’re clearly trying to help Carr with taking the tops off of opposing defenses. I believe his ceiling for the upcoming year is most likely QB10 range with his floor around the QB16 range putting him at the middle of the pack.

Marcus Mariota is fresh off of signing a two-year deal worth 17.6 million after getting benched for Ryan Tannehill last year in Week 7 against the Chargers. Just like that the Titans made it to the AFC championship game in underdog fashion with Tannehill leading the crew, and Mariota was out of a job.

He will be ready to go try to make his comeback if Carr has any injury issues throughout the year. Until then I believe Derek Carr is the day one starter for the Raiders.

Running Backs

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Josh Jacobs only started in 13 games due to an ailing Shoulder Clavicle Fracture since Week 7. He also sat out the last three games of the season because of it. Even though he was out the last three games he still finished RB20 in fantasy points with seven total touchdowns which was 17th in the league.

Surprisingly he finished with 1,150 rushing yards on 242 attempts with an impressive 4.8 yards per carry. He also had 20 receptions on 27 targets for 166 receiving yards, not bad for only starting 13 games.

If he can improve more in the passing game and gain more of Gruden’s trust he will be the every-down back in Las Vegas, and that could raise his ceiling to RB5 for me with upside for a lot of red zone touches. With Gruden calling the plays you know he’s going to feed Jacobs so his floor is probably RB10 for me.

The Raiders have an underrated offensive line and if he can crack into the passing game and get some more receptions the potential is there for him to be a top 5 running back in the NFL.

Jalen Richard and Deandre Washington shared the duties of the pass-catching backs last year for the Raiders. Richard finished 55 rushing attempts for 259 yards and a rushing touchdown, but also had 68 receptions on 81 targets for 607 receiving yards.

Unfortunately, he didn't get any receiving touchdowns which is a little scary, but you're getting 68 free points in a PPR league. With that level of involvement in the offense, he could make a decent handcuff considering Jacobs injury history.

Devante Booker signed a one year 1 million dollar deal mainly for depth at the position, but could possibly get a chance in the passing game when the opportunity presents itself. Other than that he probably won't have much fantasy value

Wide Receivers

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Tyrell Williams started only 12 games last year and finished with 42 receptions on 64 targets with 651 yards. He also had six receiving touchdowns after going on a run of six straight weeks with a touchdown.

Now that Ruggs is on the team he could have an even bigger breakout year this time around. Although with the run-heavy offense, there’s going to be some weeks that are hit or miss, but he will be fighting Darren Waller and Ruggs for attention most weeks.

Henry Ruggs III was the Las Vegas Raiders first draft pick for a brand new city, so you know they had to make a splash at the playmaker position. If there's one thing I know in this world, you CAN’T teach speed, and this kid runs like lightning out on the field.

He’s only going to cause trouble for opposing defenses with his quickness, they will have no choice but to have help over the top. Leaving plenty of single coverage for other receivers to take advantage. I think his rookie season will be pretty similar to that of Marquise Brown for the Ravens and that could be his ceiling, with his floor being more similar to that of Mecole Hardman for the Chiefs.

Hunter Renfrow played in 13 games and started just four games. In that time he made quite the impact in the slot for Derek Carr finishing with 49 receptions on 71 targets. He made the most of his opportunities with 605 reception yards and four touchdowns. With more reps and chances to play this year he has the potential for a breakout sophomore year.

Nelson Agholor signed a one year $1 million deal to add some more veteran depth to this receiving core. He's coming off a poor season last year with the Philadelphia Eagles, but there's a chance for redemption with a new team. His best year he posted 62 receptions on 768 yards and eight reception touchdowns and is looking to get back into that form again in 2020.

Tight Ends

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Darren Waller exploded into the Fantasy Football world in 2019 after the Raiders stole him from the Ravens practice squad. He stunned everybody who decided not to pick him off waivers last year, and missed out on a stud tight end.

He finished as TE3 in fantasy points and 2nd in receiving yards with 1,145 yards on 90 catches. The man had 117 targets as a tight end. That puts you in the TE1 argument with Kelce, Ertz, and Kittle when you’re that involved in the offense.

The volume and opportunity is there for him. However, he only had three receiving touchdowns. If he could find the endzone just a couple more times he’s a lock in for another great fantasy season. His ceiling of potential is absolutely TE1 level, but if he doesn’t earn the crown of No. 1 tight end at the end of year his floor would still be TE3/TE4.

Jason Witten signed a one year, $4 million deal in the offseason for the Raiders to add some extra veteran depth with hopes of him making some key plays when they need them. He finished TE11 last year posting respectable numbers for a guy coming out of retirement with 63 receptions on 83 targets; 529 receiving yards and four touchdowns.

With Darren Waller running the show I don't think Witten will finish at TE11 again this year. However, he has proven many people wrong over the years being the security blanket in Dallas. His ceiling for the year will probably be TE10 with a floor around TE20.

Final Verdict

Overall if you're looking for a fantasy stud on this team your best chance is taking a chance on Josh Jacobs in the early rounds. I can’t see him making it past the 2nd round most fantasy drafts due to his massive workload gifted from coach Gruden's offensive playstyle.

Darren Waller is probably the only other fantasy stud that could make a significant difference for your team. Tyrell Williams will be the safest pick at wideout, but if you can't snag him in a good spot in the draft you could take a flyer in the later rounds with Henry Ruggs III torching speed and explosiveness. You can always find a silver lining to something even in a black hole.

Visit the F6P Fantasy Football page for more advice to get you prepared for the 2020 season.

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