2022 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview

by Emily Lefco
2022 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview

The Fantasy Football season is upon us, and here at Fantasy Six Pack, we have your back with team previews.  Join me as I go through the 2022 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview.

The Raiders are coming off a playoff run for the first time since 2017. They finished 10-7, behind the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC West.

Las Vegas has installed a new coaching staff and upgraded their offense by acquiring Davante Adams.

His presence in the AFC West will have significant implications in Fantasy Football.

View my previous article on the Fantasy Football impact of the Davante Adams trade, on both the Las Vegas Raiders and Green Bay Packers alike.

2022 Fantasy Football Las Vegas Raiders Preview

Quarterback:

Derek Carr is the only quarterback worth talking about on the Raiders.  The Las Vegas Raiders and Derek Carr agreed to a three-year contract extension earlier this offseason.  While it will be challenging to replicate what Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams did in Green Bay; still, there is excitement for the Raiders and for Derek Carr, who is better than people think.

In 2021, Derek Carr had the fourth most completions, ahead of Josh Allen; he had the fifth-best completion rate, better than Tom Brady; he also had the sixth-most yards per game, more than Aaron Rodgers.

Last year, the former second-round pick in 2014 threw for a career-high 4,804 yards, 23 touchdowns and 14 interceptions on 626 attempts in 17 games. The signal-caller is likely the only player to benefit from the Davante Adams trade, as we will see an increase in his Fantasy value.

Carr is not good on the run, so he will need to score many touchdowns to reach a higher ceiling. Nevertheless, Derek Carr is now a borderline top-10 QB in 2022, and Fantasy managers may finally be able to call him a realistic QB1 in 2022.

Running Backs

Josh Jacobs

In a Josh McDaniels' offense, you can expect that 20% of targets will go to the running game, taking targets away from the receivers and tight ends.  Las Vegas' RB1, Josh Jacobs, could see more screen passes in 2022 under their new head coach. The Raiders denied Jacobs a fifth-year extension; however, he remains under contract with Las Vegas this coming season. It is still possible the Raiders will re-sign the 24-year-old.

Jacobs carried the ball 217 times for 872 yards and nine TDs last year while adding 54 catches (64 targets) for 348 receiving yards.  He's slated to redeem his lead role in the team's backfield, with Kenyan Drake set to work in a complementary role. As a result, Jacobs will be better off being taken as a low-end RB1, high-end RB2 in Fantasy drafts in an offense that should become more efficient.

Kenyan Drake

RB2 Kenyan Drake appeared in 12 games with the Raiders last season before undergoing season-ending surgery on his broken right ankle.  While it remains to be seen if he will have any initial limitations in practice, barring any setbacks, the 28-year-old should be well past the injury ahead of Week 1.

Last season, Drake rushed for 254 yards on 63 attempts and two touchdowns while hauling in 30 passes for 291 yards and a score.

Drake's experience and ability as a receiver should give him a place in the team's offense under their new head coach.  Drake will reprise his complementary role in Las Vegas' backfield this coming season and could find his way into PPR lineups this season.

​​Brandon Bolden

Also in the mix for running back touches is RB3 Brandon Bolden, new to the Raiders this season.  Bolden will continue to play under the same coach, Josh McDaniels, formerly the offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots.

The 32-year-old was pushed into an expanded role last season after James White's hip injury. He finished the 2021 regular season with 44 carries for 226 yards and a rushing TD to go along with 41 catches (on 49 targets) for 405 yards and two receiving scores in 17 games with New England.

Zamir White

The Las Vegas Raiders selected a former 5-star rookie recruit from Georgia, RB Zamir White, in the fourth round with the No. 122 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. White wasn't featured much as a receiver at Georgia, but he is a downhill runner that has displayed explosiveness. However, his durability is questioned as he has already had two ACL tears, one in each knee.

Wide Receivers

Davante Adams

Wideout Davante Adams is coming off a career-high 1,553 receiving yards (Packers' franchise record) with 123 receptions on 169 targets (2nd most in the NFL) for 11 touchdowns. He has led the NFL in catches (432), receiving yards (5,310), and TDs (47) since 2018.

The 29-year-old has been one of the best receivers in the NFL, earning five straight Pro Bowl nods, including first-team All-Pro selections in each of the last two years.

While Adams is better than most wide receivers in the league, he is unlikely to be a top-5 WR again.  Before the trade, I considered ranking him as WR1 ahead of Cooper Kupp. But Adams is now a safe bet to be one of the top 10 receivers in Fantasy production in 2022. He is likely behind Cooper Kupp, Justin Jefferson, Ja'Marr Chase, Stefon Diggs, CeeDee Lamb, and maybe even Tyreek Hill. While Adams' value goes down slightly, he is still a WR1.

You should feel comfortable drafting Adams as a late first-round or second-round draft pick.

Hunter Renfrow

The second high-volume option on the Raiders is WR2 Hunter Renfrow, who is expected to have an expanded role in 2022.  The third-year wideout saw an increased role last season with Darren Waller banged up and Henry Ruggs being released.  Last season, Renfrow finished with 103 receptions, 1,038 receiving yards, and nine touchdowns in 17 games, with an 18% target share.

There is no chance that Renfrow sees the same amount of volume or targets.  McDaniels is impressed by Renfrow and believes he will be a significant contributor next season.  He should be a strong WR3 with real WR2 upside in standard formats in 2022.

Demarcus Robinson

Robinson is coming off a year in which he saw 41 targets (25 rec), gained 264 yards and scored three touchdowns with the Kansas City Chiefs. He has 145 receptions for 1,679 yards and 14 touchdowns in his career, across six seasons.

This coming season, the 27-year-old will compete for the team's wide receiver looks that don't go to high-volume options. The presence of Adams, Renfrow, and Darren Waller in the passing game limits Robinson's Fantasy appeal to begin the 2022 campaign.

Tight Ends

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Darren Waller

For the past three seasons, Darren Waller, viewed as a top-3 Fantasy TE, has seen his Fantasy value drop to the mid-TE1 range after being limited by injuries in 2021.  He played in 11 games and caught just 55 passes for 665 yards and two touchdowns.

Davante Adams' presence alone elevates the offense. His route running ability and red zone consistency will work with Derek Carr and lead to many targets and touchdowns. However, the yards and receptions may go to tight end, Darren Waller. Since 2019, Carr has been 4th in the NFL in TE target percentage. With choice routes and Waller hinting at him playing inside during interviews, I expect that to continue.

Adams will draw so much of the defensive coverage, alleviating Waller of some pressure.  As a result, Waller has a good chance to return to Fantasy relevancy as a top tight end for fantasy managers, if healthy.

Final Verdict

After making the playoffs for the first time in five years in 2021, the Raiders appear to be heading in the right direction. However, the AFC is full of talented teams led by superstar quarterbacks.

In a division with the Chiefs, Chargers, and Denver Broncos, the Raiders don't have an easy road to the playoffs in 2022.


They have made a few critical moves that were needed this offseason, giving the Raiders a chance to return to the playoffs next year. No matter how they finish, the Raiders should be a lot of fun to watch this year, with many games ending up in shoot-outs. Bam bam!


Check out the rest of our 2022 Fantasy Football Team Previews!

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