Fantasy Football: James Jones' new home makes him risky

      July 11, 2014 @ 16:45:35 PDT

Please take a brief moment out of your Friday to think about something not related to LeBron James, would ya? Pleeeeasse?

WR James Jones, Oakland Raiders
We're not in Green Bay anymore

OK, now that I have your attention, let's discuss the Oakland Raiders. I know you must be thrilled. Anyway, if you haven't been following the Silver and Black's busy offseason, you have some catching up to do.

They seriously retooled their defense and also revamped the most skilled positions on offense. My main focus is on James Jones, though, as I was recently asked to break down players in situations without much talent around them on SiriusXM Radio.

Jones, a Bay Area native, falls into this category in Oakland. Matt Schaub represents an upgrade at the QB position in Nor Cal, but not when it concerns Jones. The 6-foot-1, 208-pound wideout previously had Aaron Rodgers, one of the best QBs in the league, delivering him pigskin.

Darren McFadden and Maurice Jones-Drew have plenty of potential in a tandem, but can both stay healthy for a full year? That's a big question mark. In NFL terms, both running backs are old and wrinkly.

What about the other receivers surrounding Jones? Denarius Moore and Rod Streater are unproven yet explosive, and Juron Criner and Andre Holmes also have intriguing upside. But nobody is really willing to bet on any of them breaking out.

That leaves Jones as the No. 1 wideout with the most experience. The Raiders need him to stand up and carry the offense, and at the same time, mentor the young bucks. Can he do it? It kind of reminds me of Eric Decker's move from Denver to New York this year. It's almost inevitable that Decker's production will go down. If you seriously think Jones will put up similar or better numbers after moving from Green Bay to Oakland, you're not thinking clearly.

Schaub is past his prime, too, and I find it hard to trust Jones in more than a complementary role in an offense trying to find a new identity. Jones had so many other weapons around him to benefit him, and he just won't have that kind of help in his new home.

There's no doubt that Jones will be asked to build chemistry quickly with Schaub as the go-to receiver, which should make Jones more valuable in point-per-reception leagues as maybe a WR3 at best. If any of the young receivers rise to the occasion and develop a rapport with Schaub, though, Jones could be in trouble.

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About Keith Hernandez

Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program.

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