The Oakland Raiders haven’t been nearly as bad as everyone expected they would this season. They’re currently sitting at 3-4 with a chance to improve to .500 when they take on the Philadelphia Eagles this week. Part of their unexpected success can be attributed to the half-decent defense they’ve been playing but the real surprise has been the offense. Terrelle Pryor has greatly exceeded expectations in his first year as a starting quarterback and his solid play has breathed new life into the Raiders’ playmakers, most noticeably Denarius Moore.
Moore has been overlooked in Fantasy circles for much of this season in spite of very good productivity. He’s caught 27 passes for 431 yards and four touchdowns, putting him on track for the best season of his young career. Cynics will point out that he struggled against Pittsburgh Steelers corner Ike Taylor last week, getting held to just 32 yards on two catches for his worst Fantasy performance since his Week 2 goose egg, but it’s obviously unfair to scrutinize a player for the occasional rough outing. The best wideouts in the league have them now and then so nothing should be made of it.
This week, Moore is an excellent bet to redeem himself and then some. The Eagles have one of the worst secondaries in the league and they’re getting burned badly on a weekly basis. Cornerback Cary Williams has been at the center of their struggles and it just so happens that Moore is likely to be matched up with him a lot in this one.
Pryor has looked for Moore far more than anyone else on the team this season and that trend will continue against Philadelphia. Although the Raiders have taken a run-heavy approach, the Eagles’ defensive line is much better than their secondary and Pryor will be looking to exploit the weakness. Moore should draw plenty of targets and he’ll have a few opportunities to make some big plays downfield. The last time he hit the century mark in a game was Week 3, so he’s due for a big day yardage-wise. I have a feeling it’ll come against the shameful Eagles.
Look for Moore to bounce back in a big way and help carry his owners to victory in Week 9.