Get ready for what should be a classic Sunday Night Football affair. There will be an air of desperation when the Pittsburgh Steelers and Las Vegas Raiders take to the field. Neither offense is clicking early this season. Instead, both squads are relying on their imposing defenses to keep them in games. That defensive tenacity should rise to the forefront in what could be a defining moment for either team.
This article will discuss 3-5 of my favorite pick’ems from various DFS sites like Betr, Sleeper Fantasy, PrizePicks, and Underdog Fantasy.
Steelers-Raiders NFL Fantasy Pick’ems
Hunter Renfrow Lower 17.5 Receiving Yards
Over the past few seasons, Hunter Renfrow has taken on a diminished role with the Las Vegas Raiders. The Clemson product made the Pro Bowl in 2021, following that up with a disappointing 2022 campaign. He’s fallen even further off that standard this year, a trend that should continue into Week 3.
Renfrow has been targeted just once this season. Worse, he’s played just 39 snaps and has yet to start a game. That’s a long fall for the former Pro Bowl wide receiver, who at his peak was being thrown to 7.5 times per game. With Jimmy Garoppolo under center, it’s evident that the Raiders will continue to prioritize other playmakers in their aerial assault.
Heading into Sunday’s battle, Davante Adams continues to get the lion’s share of looks on offense. Adams has a meaty 34.0% target share, representing one of the best in the NFL. Moreover, Adams, Jakobi Meyers, and Josh Jacobs have accounted for 70.0% of Garoppolo’s pass attempts so far this season.
It’s obvious that Jimmy G and Renfrow aren’t on the same page, and that will continue to negatively impact his receiving projections. Factoring in the Steelers’ intimidating defensive unit that has playmakers at every level, it seems unlikely that Renfrow will surpass the 17.5 receiving yards needed to go higher than his total.
Jaylen Warren Higher 15.5 Receiving Yards
Mike Tomlin has no choice but to incorporate Jaylen Warren more heavily into the Steelers’ game planning. When called upon, Warren has delivered critical yards that have kickstarted Pittsburgh’s offense. With Najee Harris putting up middling numbers, look for Warren to take on a more prominent role Sunday night.
In last week’s nail-biting win over the Cleveland Browns, the Steelers offense was stagnant until Warren came in. The former Oklahoma State Cowboy broke off several big plays, garnering 20 yards on the ground. More impressively, Warren hauled in four of his six targets for 66 yards.
That was the second straight week in which Warren was targeted six times, offering a glimpse of how he will be deployed this year. More tellingly, Warren is averaging 8.7 yards per reception, highlighting his big-play ability.
The Steelers need to tap into Warren’s potential. Pittsburgh’s offense has scored just two touchdowns this season, and they’ll need more than that if they hope to contend in an ultra-competitive AFC North. Warren continues to further the team’s cause, and Tomlin needs to recognize that sooner rather than later.
We’re betting Warren beefs up his production in Week 3, going higher than 15.5 receiving yards.
Jimmy Garoppolo Lower 239.5 Passing Yards
The Jimmy Garoppolo era is off to a less-than-stellar start for the Raiders. Las Vegas is 1-1 to start the campaign, watching the Denver Broncos defeat themselves in Week 1 before getting trounced by the Buffalo Bills last Sunday. The more concerning trend is the Raiders’ inability to get their offense going; a tendency that won’t improve against a fierce Steelers defense.
The Raiders offense hasn’t looked good in either one of their games. They put up 261 yards in Week 1, falling off that pace with 240 against the Bills. That puts them third-to-last in the NFL with a laughable 250.5 yards per game.
Garoppolo has contributed to that offensive misery. Through two games, Jimmy G has mustered just 385 passing yards, failing to exceed 200 yards in either contest. Some may point to his 72.0% completion rate to validate his proficiency, but his three touchdowns to three interceptions and 6.2 adjusted yards gained per pass attempt offer a more compelling view.
Pittsburgh’s vaunted pass rush has kept both quarterbacks they’ve faced on their toes. Deshaun Watson compiled just 235 yards on 40 pass attempts last week, with Brock Purdy totaling 220 the week prior.
Garoppolo’s passing yards projection is too high for our liking. He’s been unable to get the sticks moving, an issue that will be compounded by T.J. Watt and the Steelers defense. Look for him to go lower than 239.5 passing yards.