Last updated: October 31st at 5:20pm ET.
Team Totals: Raiders 26.5, Lions 24.5
The Lions visit Oakland for a pristine pass-funnel draw; Detroit lacks anything remotely resembling a featured running back, while the Raiders’ defensive strength is on the ground, holding enemy backs to 153/551/7 (3.89 YPC) rushing. Only three NFL defenses have allowed more yards per pass attempt than Oakland (8.6), and four of the last six quarterbacks to face DC Paul Guenther’s unit have tallied top-six fantasy results. Arguably playing his best-ever football, Matthew Stafford is working on career highs in yards per attempt (8.4), touchdown rate (6.4%), passer rating (105.3), and QBR (70.0) under first-year OC Darrell Bevell. With three top-six fantasy games in his last four starts, Stafford is a high-ceiling QB1 in this plum setting worth DFS-stack consideration along with Kenny Golladay or Marvin Jones. Stafford is attempting 20-plus-yard passes at a league-high 19.6% rate, while Oakland has coughed up the NFL’s second-most 20-plus-yard completions (35). From a sports-betting angle, Lions-Raiders is one of my favorite over bets of Week 9. … This is how running back touches were distributed in the Lions’ first post-Kerryon Johnson game: Tre Carson 12; Ty Johnson 8; J.D. McKissic 4; Paul Perkins 3. And snaps: Johnson 39%; Carson 31%; McKissic 26%; Perkins 10%. You couldn’t draw up more fantasy-unfriendly usage allocation. Johnson is still the best dart throw in the group; he had two quality first-half runs called back in last week’s win over the Giants and led the backfield in pass routes run (15). Perkins’ early-week release and Carson’s mid-week addition to the injury report (hamstring) did give Johnson renewed late-week life as a flex option.
Stafford’s 2019 target distribution: Golladay 55; Jones 47; Danny Amendola 39; T.J. Hockenson 31; Ty Johnson and McKissic 13; Jesse James 12; Marvin Hall 7. … The Raiders’ penchant for allowing big pass completions suits Golladay, who leads the NFL in 20-plus-yard targets (19). With 100-plus yards and/or a touchdown in five of his last seven games, Golladay is a legitimate WR1 play. … The Raiders have been pulverized for wideout lines of 6/172/2 (Demarcus Robinson), 2/133/1 (Marquez Valdes-Scantling), 7/120/0 (Courtland Sutton), 11/109/0 (DeAndre Hopkins), 7/97/2 (Allen Robinson), 5/86/1 (Emmanuel Sanders), 4/72/0 (Zach Pascal), 4/61/1 (Mecole Hardman), 3/55/1 (Adam Thielen), and 2/54/1 (Jake Kumerow). You’ll notice many of those receivers were non-“number ones” like Jones, who has obviously lacked consistency but maintained a high week-to-week ceiling. This sets up as an upside game for him. … With 20 targets over the last two weeks and 95-plus yards in three games this year, Amendola can’t be overlooked as a PPR-specific WR3 play against the pass-funnel Raiders. Highly vulnerable on interior routes, Oakland has hemorrhaged completions on 53-of-70 (76%) slot targets for 685 yards (9.8 YPA) and five touchdowns. … Simply not a big part of Detroit’s passing game at this point, Hockenson hasn’t topped 32 receiving yards since Week 1 and has run more than 21 pass routes just once since Week 2.
Back from his season-best fantasy finish (QB7) in last week’s narrow road loss to the Texans, Derek Carr catches an even friendlier opponent at home in the Lions, who’ve allowed top-12 fantasy outcomes to 6-of-7 quarterbacks faced, including back-to-back four-TD games to Kirk Cousins and Daniel Jones. Bottom six in sack rate (4.4%) and bottom three in QB Hit Rate (10.8%), Matt Patricia’s defense is giving enemy passers clean pockets on a weekly basis. When kept clean this year, Carr is averaging 7.99 yards per attempt with an 8:4 TD-to-INT ratio. In a potentially high-scoring affair, Carr is a rock-solid streamer in season-long leagues. … This is a blowup spot for Josh Jacobs as a home-favorite bellcow facing a Lions defense that’s been gutted for 166/762/7 (4.59 YPC) rushing and 11 all-purpose touchdowns by enemy backs in seven games. Detroit is also permitting a league-high 62.1 receiving yards per game to Jacobs’ position. While Jacobs’ receiving usage would be greater in a perfect world, he does have at least two targets in five straight games. The Raiders’ offensive line has been outstanding this season, permitting tackles for loss at the NFL’s third-lowest rate (13.5%). This should be a 20-plus-touch spot for Jacobs.
Carr’s Week 8 target distribution: Darren Waller 8; Tyrell Williams 6; Hunter Renfrow 4; Jalen Richard 3; Jacobs, Zay Jones, Foster Moreau, and Trevor Davis 2. … After last week’s two-catch clunker, this is an obvious bounce-back spot for Waller; tight ends have caught 28-of-38 targets (74%) for 352 yards (9.3 YPA) and two touchdowns against the Lions in their last four games. Waller ranked second among NFL tight ends in both targets and Air Yards (68) in Week 8, but the Texans’ smothering coverage didn’t let him get free. The fact that Williams (3/91/1) and Renfrow (4/88/1) made them pay bodes well for Waller going forward. … Williams returned from plantar fasciitis for his first above-50-yard game since Week 1 against the Texans, making highlight-reel contested grabs down the sideline. Particularly with Lions top CB Darius Slay (hamstring) still on the mend, this is a fine matchup. Detroit’s inability to create pressure enhances Williams’ odds of getting loose for a big play deep. … Renfrow cleared 30 yards for the first time all year against the Texans, while fellow interior-oriented WRs Larry Fitzgerald (8/113/1), Keenan Allen (8/98/0), Golden Tate (8/85/0), Nelson Agholor (8/50/2), and Bisi Johnson (4/40/1) have paid dividends versus Detroit’s slot coverage. Still, Renfrow was fortunate to catch all four of his targets and remains a PPR-specific WR4. Here is how Raiders pass-catcher routes were distributed in Williams’ Week 8 return: Waller 28; Williams 26; Renfrow 19; Davis 16; Jones 11; Moreau 7; Derek Carrier 4.
Score Prediction: Lions 28, Raiders 27