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  • Buy, Sell, or Keep: Las Vegas Raiders Offense

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    The Las Vegas Raiders have a new head coach, a new general manager, and a brand new shiny toy at the wide receiver position. Who are their Buy/Sell/Keep in the new Raiders offensive philosophy?


    Buy

    Josh Jacobs, RB

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    The Las Vegas Raiders drafted Josh Jacobs out of Alabama in the first round of the 2019 NFL draft. This 24-year-old running back is heading into his fourth year in the league. Jacobs has had a minimum of 217 carries in each of his three years with the Raiders.

    Jacobs had 242 carries for 1,150 yards and 7 TDs in his 13 games as a rookie. In his second, he had 273 carries for 1,065 yards and 12 TDs. Last year, Jacobs had 217 carries for 872 yards and 9 TDs. He only missed three games in his last two seasons.

    Jacobs had his receptions increase each of his three years so far. As a rookie, he had 20 receptions for 166 yards. Jacobs followed that up with 33 receptions for 238 yards in his second year. Last year, the Raiders brought in Kenyan Drake to be the third down, a change of pace back.

    Jacobs delivered his best reception year by quite a bit with 54 receptions for 348 yards. Drake only had 30 receptions for 291 yards. This fact will surprise a few owners in your leagues.

    How will the new offensive philosophy affect running back production in the passing game?

    Josh McDaniels is the new Raiders head coach. He brings a brand new philosophy to the Raiders offense. The big play, down the field, go big or go home mentality is tuned in for a new more conservative approach to moving the football down the field.

    Last year, the Patriots’ RBs grabbed 21.15% of the total team’s completions. The year before, in 2020, the RBs caught even a bigger percentage of total completions with 30.74% of the share. In 2019, under Tom Brady, the total completions to RBs topped out at 31.75%.

    Josh Jacobs has shown he can catch the ball when it is thrown to him. McDaniels has an offense that revolves around ball control and passes to RBs. Derek Carr should complete somewhere between 350 and 400 passes this year. With 30% of the completions going to RBs, that is 120 receptions available for them.

    Jacobs almost doubled Drake’s receptions last year, so I could see about 70-80 receptions for him in 2022. Add in the 1,000 yards rushing and 10+ TDs, and you have a buy now stud. Don’t wait.

    Sell

    Davante Adams, WR

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    Davante Adams was a second-round pick in the 2014 NFL draft by the Green Bay Packers. He played all of his eight years with the Packers and compiled an awesome 669 receptions for 8,821 and 73 TDs.

    This soon to be 30 year old WR seems to be aging like a fine wine as his last two years were his best two years in receptions. Combined, Adams had 238 receptions off of 318 targets for 2,927 yards and 29 TDs over the last two years.

    The Packers did not want to meet his contract demands, so they traded him to the Las Vegas Raiders for a 2022 first and second-round pick. Adams is now reunited with Carr from their days together at Fresno State in 2012 and 2013. At Fresno State, they combined for 233 receptions for 3,031 yards and 38 TDs. These two players have maintained a solid friendship over the years also.

    How will Adams fit into the McDaniels offensive game plan?

    The Patriots’ only 100 reception WR in the past eight years was Julian Edelman in 2019. The next closest WR in receptions that same year was Philip Dorsett with 29. New England’s TEs combined had just 30 receptions.  The Patriots didn’t have the weapons in 2019. When they did have other weapons, like Rob Gronkowski and James White, they spread the ball around.

    I expect the Raiders to spread the ball around with Darren Waller, Hunter Renfrow, and Jacobs getting their fair share of receptions. Adams will not be a top 10 WR in 2022. A lot of owners see his reunion with Carr as a continuation of Adams’ domination in receptions. For that reason, sell him for the moon and more!

    Keep

    Darren Waller, TE

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    Darren Waller was a sixth-round pick in the 2015 NFL draft by the Baltimore Ravens. After struggling with addiction issues in his first three-plus years in the league, Waller found himself, got the help he needed, and landed on the Las Vegas Raiders’ active roster in November of 2018.

    He had six receptions off of six targets for 75 yards in those four games. Waller had finally found his spot in the NFL as a tight end and the rest is history.

    In 2019, Waller had 90 receptions for 1,145 yards and three TDs. This led the Raiders by nearly double the next closest teammate. Waller continued his dominance in 2020 with 107 receptions for 1,196 yards and 9 TDs. However, 2021 was a little bit of a down year with him missing six games due to a knee injury. Waller still averaged five receptions for 60 yards per game.

    For some unknown reason, Waller seems to be falling in value since Adams was signed. McDaniels loves to use his tight end in his offense. Gronkowski was always a huge part of the offense. Waller is just 29 years old right now and has plenty of football left. He will be a major part of this offense going forward, especially with defenses shifting their attention to Adams. Do not trade him.

    Waller will be a top-five TE again this year. Keep him and reap the rewards, especially in TE premium leagues.


    Thank you for checking out the latest article in the Buy/Sell/Keep series! You can read all of my articles on my IDP Guys author page. Be sure to follow me on Twitter at @OldMan_FF and @IDPGuys (we have offense too) and please check out our website at idpguys.org.

    Discussion

    1. […] So that is the list. Writing these up for you folks is nothing but fun, and I genuinely hope you find these articles to be helpful and, most of all, enjoyable. I cannot predict the future, but I believe in what the numbers and the eye test show me. That is what fantasy football is all about! Be sure to check out some of the fantastic articles my teammates have written like this one! […]

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