Ahoy, Raider fans! RaiderDamus here with another exciting edition of the Fantasy Foretelling. The last few weeks RaiderDamus has been somewhat down on the Raiders from a fantasy perspective, which was wise as they have scored a total of 30 points in the last two games- if you started any Raiders during that span you probably shouldn't have. The Raiders are a team in turmoil right now with their poor play and massive injury troubles. This week they face a pretty good, but inconsistent, Lions team with plenty of weapons on offense. After the break, as usual, I will tell you what to do with the real-life players on your make-believe team.
We all know how the Raiders are playing, so there's no real time to pontificate here about them. That's what the 'RaiderDamus Sees The Future' column is for and that is coming very soon. Let's just get straight into the fantasy projections. As usual we start with the opponents.
QB Matt Stafford- Start. He's had some down weeks lately, and this is tied to Calvin Johnson's recent mediocrity, but he is still a really good QB who is worthy of a starting spot this week against a team that has just been carved up lately through the air. Stafford can be erratic, but he can also be deadly good. 345 pass yds, 2 TD, INT, fumble lost.
WR Calvin Johnson- Must start every week. He sits, deservedly, at the very top of the WR ranks and with Andre Johnson's hamstring issues has no real competition there. With Michael Huff on the shelf this week, Megatron is an uncoverable nightmare and will give the Raiders fits. 120 rec yds, TD.
WR Titus Young- Bench. Stafford is going to try to force the ball to Johnson. Young may get the scraps of the passing game but won't make much of an impact. 60 rec yds.
WR Nate Burleson- Bench. May catch one or two long passes that will make him seem better than he really is. 70 rec yds.
TE Brandon Pettigrew- Start. He's really underrated because he is underutilized. He will be a red zone terror and will catch a TD pass because the Raiders will cover him with a linebacker. 50 rec yds, TD.
RB Lions- Bench any of them. They are all hurt and they all suck. One of them might score, but God knows which one.
Lions defense: Start. Until Palmer gets his weapons back, he is going to be forced to chuck the ball into dangerous places and he can be taken advantage of. The Lions' defensive line gets Ndamukong Suh back this week and even without him is a top-5 unit.
And now, our heroes, the Oakland Raiders.
QB Carson Palmer- Bench. Meh. He's going up against a pretty good defense here, and I don't trust him not to throw the ball to them. Denarius Moore is back, which should help him, but the Raiders' inability to establish the run makes them one dimensional and limits Palmer's effectiveness. He can score in garbage time but that's about it at this point until the Raiders get healthy. 250 pass yds, TD, 2 INT.
RB Michael Bush- Start. I think the offensive line will step up their game this week and really try to bully the Lions defensive line, whose main weakness is overeagerness. They want so badly to get to the QB they often overrun the draw or the off-guard runs and are out of position to make the tackle. Bush is a good bet this week to score at least once and rack up some yardage. 120 rush yds, TD.
Don't bother starting any other Raiders unless you have to. Even Denarius Moore isn't a good play this week. And please no more "I started Marcel Reece" comments, that's just asinine. When a RB/FB touches the ball at most five times a game he isn't worth starting. Reece is great and all in real life but not in fantasy. Just stop it.