QB Carson Palmer (Oakland)
Excluding the Kansas City game, where he was still getting into the flow of things and wasn’t even supposed to play, Palmer played 9 games last year. He threw for 2637 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions. Over 16 games, that’s 4688 yards, 23 touchdowns, and 23 interceptions. Some think he could improve on those numbers as he has another year in the system, but I have a hard time believing he improves on his 8.4 YPA from last year, especially since his career high before that was 7.8 and his career average is 7.1. He also turns 33 in December. That TD/INT ratio could improve, but remember, he led the league in interceptions in 2010.
Projection: 4120 passing yards, 22 passing touchdowns, 21 interceptions, 40 rushing yards, 0 rushing touchdowns (214 pts standard/258 pts in 6 pt TD leagues)
RB Darren McFadden (Oakland)
8/27/12: I’m still down on McFadden, but I’m moving him up because he’s looked really good this preseason. He’s not worth a 1st round pick though. He’s way too injury prone. He’s never played more than 13 games in a season or had more than 227 carries and has only once gone over 113 carries in 4 seasons. He’s their everything back, but he’s almost a sure bet to miss 3-4+ games, at least.
Darren McFadden has only once gone over 113 carries in 4 seasons. There’s upside here, but there’s also downside. He’s a talented back who averages 4.8 YPC over his career and he’ll have no competition for the lead back job if he’s healthy, I just don’t trust him to be healthy.
Projection: 200 carries 960 rushing yards 8 total touchdowns 41 catches 350 receiving yards (179 pts standard/220 pts PPR)
RB Taiwan Jones (Oakland)
8/27/12: Jones won the backup job after a strong preseason. McFadden is almost certain to miss 3-4+ games and Jones will probably get 15+ touches in those games. He’s incredibly fast and talented. If you do draft McFadden, make sure you take this talented handcuff late.
Like Mike Goodson, Jones is a name to know because of how injury prone McFadden is. Neither of them have much value until McFadden goes down, but he will and in that case, both will be ownable.
Projection: 120 carries 540 rushing yards 4 total touchdowns 20 catches 180 receiving yards (96 pts standard/116 pts PPR)
WR Denarius Moore (Oakland)
8/20/12: Moore has missed all of the Preseason and most of Training Camp with a hamstring problem, which he’s been dealing with for 2 months. Hamstring injuries tend to linger and Moore missed time with injuries last season too so he probably won’t play all 16 games this season. I’ve cut his projected stats to account for a decrease in projected games played from 16 to 14 and lowered his YPC because hamstring injuries can sap explosion.
In 6 games with Carson Palmer, not including the Kansas City game, Moore caught 19 passes for 406 yards and 3 touchdowns, good for 51 catches for 1083 yards and 8 touchdowns over 16 games. He’s having a great offseason and Carson Palmer loves throwing to him so in his 2nd season, Moore could have a huge year assuming he plays in all 16 games, or at least comes close.
Projection: 48 catches 860 receiving yards 7 receiving touchdowns (128 pts standard/176 pts PPR)
WR Darrius Heyward Bey (Oakland)
Darrius Heyward Bey proved he was more than fast last season, catching 64 passes for 975 yards and 4 touchdowns. His production was about the same with and without Carson Palmer so he should match those numbers this year.
Projection: 66 catches 960 receiving yards 6 receiving touchdowns (132 pts standard/198 pts PPR)