Fantasy Football: How New Oakland Raider T.J. Houshmandzadeh Affects Your Team

The Oakland Raiders—always going against the grain. 

Signing a semi-retired quarterback as the new starter, despite not having thrown a pass in the NFL in 10 months? Check. 

Signing a semi-retired 34-year-old wide receiver, who hadn’t caught a pass in the NFL in nearly 10 months? Check. 

Rely on both of them to jump-start an injury-laden offense? Check? 

With the recent signings of both quarterback Carson Palmer and receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh, the Raiders are depending on a couple of weathered veterans to stabilize their offense and carry them into playoff contention in the wild, wild AFC West.

But with both players not having stepped onto for quite some time—will they be able to dust of the rust? And how will injecting them into the lineup affect the Oakland offense? More importantly, how will that injection subsequently affect your fantasy team? 

It’s safe to say that Houshmandzadeh won't be up to speed in Oakland this Sunday against the Denver Broncos—both in terms of physical celerity as well as knowledge of the offensive playbook. That being said, how many plays will Housmandzadeh get this weekend?

Raiders head coach Hue Jackson is not likely to start Houshmandzadeh; but that’s not to say that Jackson won’t give him a lot of playing time either. After all, Jackson threw Palmer into the fire during his first week with the team, in the middle of the Raiders’ game against the Kansas City Chiefs two weekends ago. With Jackson, no one can expect anything other than the unexpected. So Houshmandzadeh could see 10 plays or 50.

So how will his football atrophy impact the other Raiders on offense? Having a familiar face on offense is certainly going to be comfortable for Palmer. He will have that safety blanket, mostly on third-down or broken plays. But it’s the other weapons on offense ...

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