Shark Bites

Raiders RB Marshawn Lynch will miss "at least" a month with a groin injury, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Rapoport adds that IR is a "strong possibility," which could cost Lynch 8 weeks. We'd try to keep him stashed for now considering the lack of viable fantasy RBs out there, but Lynch is droppable in shallow-bench leagues. His absence will leave the backfield in the hands of Doug Martin and Jalen Richard. Martin seems like the favorite for carries, with Richard dominating passing-game work. Neither is a particularly exciting fantasy add in a scuffling Raiders offense.

Raiders HC Jon Gruden said Tuesday that he's "concerned" about RB Marshawn Lynch's groin strain. Lynch is getting the issue checked out during the bye week. He's been on the injury report every week this season with hip, shoulder and groin issues, but this is a new injury. We'll update his status when we learn more. Doug Martin would likely step in as Oakland's ball-carrier if Lynch misses time.

The Raiders have released LB Derrick Johnson. The veteran's playing time had dwindled to just about a quarter of the defensive snaps over the past 3 games, so his departure shouldn't mean much for the Oakland defense. It could, however, mean a further playing-time boost for Marquel Lee, the 2nd-year LB who had supplanted Johnson as the middle starter. Though their snap counts didn't correlate directly over the past 4 games, they came pretty close. Lee will be interesting to watch for IDP purposes. He's only an add in deep/dynasty formats right now.

Raiders QB Derek Carr injured his left (non-throwing) arm in the 4th quarter of Sunday's game against the Seahawks. We'll look for more info. QB A.J. McCarron is Oakland's backup.

Raiders WR Amari Cooper sustained a concussion in the 1st half of Sunday's game against the Seahawks. It's the 2nd known concussion of his career, with the 1st coming last November. We'll track his progress through the protocol. The Raiders have a Week 7 bye.

The Raiders have signed K Matthew McCrane to fill in for the injured Mike Nugent. McCrane is a Kansas State product who converted a solid 86.4% of his FG tries over the past 4 seasons. There's no reason to roster him in fantasy right now.

Raiders K Mike Nugent has a hip injury and is in danger of missing this weekend's game against the Browns, according to insider Michael Gehlken. Oakland figures to add a K over the next couple of days, but this is a situation to avoid in Week 4 fantasy lineups.

UPDATE: Nugent has been placed on IR.

The Raiders have signed WR Martavis Bryant to a 1-year deal. Bryant, of course, was released by Oakland at final cuts amid reports of another suspension. That followed a disappointing August that included Bryant getting called out by HC Jon Gruden. But now the Raiders evidently want Bryant back until that suspension is handed down. It reeks of desperation from a team that just got blown out while scoring only 13 points in a primetime home opener. We wouldn't bother adding Bryant to fantasy rosters right now.

Raiders RB Marshawn Lynch is good to go for Monday night's opener against the Rams. Lynch put in limited practices this week with a groin issue, but he didn't appear on Saturday's game-status report. That indicates we don't need to worry about the groin and can use him as planned. Lynch is a fringe RB2 option against a Rams team that plays the run soft but is also a 4.5-point road favorite.

Raiders RB Marshawn Lynch (groin) has been limited in practice so far this week. There’s been no indication that he’s in danger of missing Monday night’s game against the Rams, but we’ll get another update after the team’s practice on Saturday.

The Raiders have placed K Eddy Pineiro (groin) on IR and will roll with K Mike Nugent. The 36-year-old has connected on 83.9% of his career FGs. He might be a spot-start option this season, but you should be able to do better than Nugent coming out of your draft.

The Raiders have released WR Martavis Bryant, who is facing another suspension under the league's substance abuse policy, ESPN's Dan Graziano reports. Bryant, of course, already drew a full-year suspension, so this might signal the end of his NFL career. For the Raiders, it means getting no return on a player they traded a 3rd-round pick for in April. It looks like Seth Roberts will enter yet another year as Oakland's #3 WR, while TE Jared Cook and the RBs could see a few more targets available than expected.

The Bills have traded QB A.J. McCarron to the Raiders for a 5th-round pick. It's not a surprising move after Josh Allen and Nathan Peterman seemed to play their way ahead of him in the preseason. Expect McCarron to immediately slot in as Derek Carr's backup, replacing Connor Cook.

Update: Oakland released Cook.

Bills QB A.J. McCarron suffered a hairline fracture in his collarbone in Friday night's preseason game against the Browns, according to insider Vic Carucci. So that knocks him out of the QB competition. Rookie QB Josh Allen played well vs. Cleveland, completing 9 of 13 passes for 60 yards and a score. At this point, we'd bet on the Bills rolling with Allen as their Week 1 starter. This obviously remains a situation to avoid in fantasy drafts.

Raiders HC Jon Gruden called out WR Martavis Bryant over the weekend. “He’s got to get out here and play better,” Gruden said of Bryant, who missed time last week with an illness. “He’s in a competitive situation. Right now, a lot of the other receivers have had a nice camp. He’s just got to learn the offense. He’s got to stay out here. He’s had some illnesses. He’s got to get on the field. He’s got to master the offense and become more versatile, and that’s the key to making this team better.” According to insider Michael Gehlken, Amari Cooper and Jordy Nelson are "solidified" as Oakland's top 2 receivers. It sounds like Bryant is battling with the likes of Seth Roberts and Ryan Switzer for the #3 spot. Bryant should win that job but isn't more than a late-round flier in fantasy drafts right now.

The Bengals have released WR Brandon LaFell. Cincinnati's #2 WR the past 2 seasons, LaFell was being pushed down the depth chart by the team's younger receivers, namely John Ross. LaFell's agent admitted that he'd be "lobbying" for his client's release. We'll see where LaFell lands, but he's unlikely to be a 2018 fantasy factor. Meanwhile, the door is open for a breakout season for Ross.

Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that the Raiders "fear potential NFL discipline might be imminent" for WR Martavis Bryant. Gehlken said the team refused to comment but that it is "awaiting final word on the situation" which is "believed to pertain to the NFL's substance-abuse policy." Bryant, of course, already lost the whole 2016 season to a drug suspension. So it's hard to imagine any further discipline in that area would be light. If Bryant goes down for a significant stretch, then Jordy Nelson would likely get pushed back outside from his slot role. That would leave Seth Roberts and Ryan Switzer to compete for snaps inside. We'll see how this one plays out.

The Raiders traded up 2 spots in Round 3 to draft LSU EDGE player Arden Key. The versatile pass rusher racked up 11 sacks as a 2016 sophomore but then took a leave of absence from school and dealt with a shoulder injury. Key also weight just 238 pounds in the pre-draft season. He'll need work before seeing regular playing time in the NFL and will make for a high-risk rookie pick in dynasty fantasy football drafts.

The Steelers have traded WR Martavis Bryant to the Raiders in exchange for a 3rd-round pick, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Bryant struggled in his return last season from nearly 2-year absence, hauling in 50 of 84 targets for 603 yards and 3 scores. He's still just 26, though, and racked up 14 TDs with a 17.3 yards-per-catch average over his first 2 NFL campaigns. Bryant joins a remade Oakland WR corps with Jordy Nelson alongside Amari Cooper. Bryant figures to open the season as the #3 WR but could push for #2 if Nelson's decline continues.

Pro Football Talk reports that Raiders RB Marshawn Lynch agreed Saturday to a restructured contract, basically surrendering $500,000 to guarantee his base salary for the coming season. You can read further details in the PFT post, but the fantasy impact here is that the move all but guarantees Lynch will play this fall. The veteran doesn't seem to pair naturally with newly signed RB Doug Martin. Neither presents special ability as a receiver, each profiling more as an "early-down" type. Frankly, neither excites us for 2018 fantasy football drafts, but both tend to linger into "why not" value range in current best-ball drafts.


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