September 9, 2022, 1:05 pm
Raiders (+3) vs. Chargers (-175): Sept 11
An incredible divisional game to open the year for two teams that have high expectations. The Chargers are one of the favorites to win the Super Bowl, while the Raiders are a darkhorse in that conversation. Both squads made huge trades and free agent acquisitions during the offseason and look to showcase all their new and existing talent in what should be a high-scoring thriller. These two teams matched up in the regular season finale that was one of the best games of last season. The Raiders won in an overtime thriller that punched their playoff ticket and eliminated the Chargers from the postseason.
Justin Herbert is an absolute must-start in every single fantasy league each week and he is more than capable to finish as the No. 1 QB on the season. He finished as the QB2 overall in the aforementioned season finale last year and was a top-12 option in their Week 4 matchup as well. Herbert is one of the most exciting and talented passers in the league and he has some incredible talent around him. He does have a little bit of rushing upside in his game, but will do most of his damage through the air against a Raiders defense that ranked in the middle of the pack last season in passing yards allowed. In the two games last season, Herbert averaged over 300 yards per game with a combined five TDs against the Raiders. Perhaps the fact that the Raiders eliminated the Chargers from playoff contention will put an extra chip on Herbert’s shoulder as we head into the opener.
Fresh off a season where he finished as the RB2 in all formats, Austin Ekeler is a locked-and-loaded workhorse RB. In the two games vs. Las Vegas last season Ekeler had dominating performances. In their Week 4 matchup, he rushed for a season-high 117 yards on the ground and two combined touchdowns. Ekeler had a remarkable 12 targets and combined for 99 yards and two touchdowns in their Week 18 game. He is a must-start RB and should have very minimal touches taken by the committee of backup RBs on the Chargers roster.
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