2019 Fantasy Football Rookie Roundup: Oakland Raiders

The 2019 NFL Draft is in the rearview mirror, and it’s time for the next part of the NFL calendar. That’s right… massive, rampant speculation! They will go through drills in shorts, and we will endlessly project and prognosticate on their fantasy football futures. There are 78 guys who might have fantasy football relevance after their names were called in Nashville. Our goal with our Fantasy Football Rookie Roundup series is to give you a quick hit on every one of these guys. By the end, you’ll know these guys better than their mothers know them. Because it’s not like their mothers are necessarily good at fantasy football. 

Jon Gruden and the Oakland Raiders spent 2018 tearing down what already existed there in Oakland, with an eye towards rebuilding it in Gruden’s vision. Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper were out, and Gruden reportedly came close to doing the same with QB Derek CarrCarr persists, and Gruden & new GM Mike Mayock snagged Carr three new fantasy football eligible assets to play with in the offense, but are they worth your time in your fantasy leagues? 

Round 1, Pick 24 overall – Josh Jacobs, Running Back, Alabama 

I already took a look at Josh Jacobs and the Raiders in our NFL Draft Round One review. I’ll give the Reader’s Digest version here. There’s no real competition for touches in Oakland, and if you say Doug Martin, just close the website right now. I watched three games in preparation for the draft, and Jacobs had one negative run in those three games. Dude churns out yards. There are concerns about the offensive line in Oakland, but starting with that profile, the line doesn’t bother me too much. He’s fast enough, he’s extremely shifty, and he will make his own blocking.  

Josh Jacobs will end up a back-end RB2 this year through sheer volume alone, but people are already taking him at his upside, as he is the #19 running back off the board in fantasy football drafts. I am bullish on Jacobs, but that price might prove too high, as none of the risks are baked in. He has upside as an ideal RB2 (a rich man’s Lamar Miller), but if you have to pull the trigger on him in the third round of your fantasy football drafts, that doesn’t adequately account for the risks associated with Jacobs. 

TALENT

OPPORTUNITY

2019 FANTASY FOOTBALL OUTLOOK

Round 4, Pick 137 overall – Foster Moreau, Tight End, LSU 

If you want to watch a lot of a slightly undersized tight end expending maximum effort on blocks, then Foster Moreau is the tight end for you. He averaged just 1.9 receptions a game in his 24 games as a starter, turning those into a blistering 623 yards and 5 scores across two seasons. There’s some buzz around Moreau because of his SPARQ score that landed him at #3 this season behind wunderkind TEs T.J. Hockenson and Noah Fant.  

However, if the Raiders turn Foster Moreau into a relevant fantasy football option in 2019, they have to both buck the tight end trend, and drastically change his profile. He’s a blocker, and turning him into a pass catcher would fly in the face of what he does. If the Raiders do go that route, he does have some soft hands and good contact balance but lacks the technical aspects of playing tight end. His best-case fantasy scenario is a poor man’s Austin Hooper. Best Case. He’s more likely to be a Logan Paulsen type guy, who some dumb-dumb in your fantasy football league picks up after he has a two-touchdown game out of nowhere before Moreau gets six targets over the next four weeks. 

There is a thread to pull on if you want to believe in Moreau for fantasy football: Jared Cook vacated over 100 tight end targets last season, with mainly Moreau and Luke Willson to replace him. If you want to believe in Moreau, that’s the path you can take. I can’t stress this enough though. Top-10% outcome is a poor man’s Austin Hooper. 

TALENT 
(pass catching only) 

OPPORTUNITY 

2019 FANTASY FOOTBALL OUTLOOK 

Round 5, Pick 139 overall – Hunter Renfrow, Wide Receiver, Clemson 

Renfrow is a little guy, at 5’10” and 184 pounds, he needs speed and agility that he doesn’t have to win in the NFL. He also boasts extraordinarily short arms. He worked well enough in college, taking advantage of wide-open fields, but he’ll need to show more at the next level to really pop. Renfrow isn’t without talent, but he can’t practice his way into longer arms or a bigger frame. Should Jon Gruden turn the Raiders into a high-powered offense, then Renfrow could have some fantasy football value, in a deep league bye week PPR Danny-Amendola-when-healthy-on-the-Patriots sort of way. Don’t expect much out of him, but if your league is deep and your prospects are dire, and the Raiders are the talk of the town, he could surprise you in the second half of 2019.  

TALENT 

OPPORTUNITY 

2019 FANTASY FOOTBALL OUTLOOK 

Like what you see? Looking for more hot content like this? Check out the rest of our 2019 Fantasy Football Rookie Roundup pieces, here!

About Jeff Krisko

You can follow me on twitter, @jeffkrisko for the same lukewarm takes you read here.

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