It wasn't too long ago (2002) when Pennington seemed to be on the verge of fantasy greatness (22TD/6INT) but he then lost his No1. WR Laveranues Coles who is now back with the team after a two-year stint with the Redskins.
Pennington then spent two injured plagued seasons in mediocrity. With Coles back in the fold, a new offensive coordinator who is much more aggressive than his predecessor, and a pretty solid second receiver in Justin McCareins, Pennington could be on the rise again. However, he still needs to prove his surgically repaired shoulder is sound so we would only draft him as a backup.
2. Can RB Curtis Martin repeat last year's success?
No one could have imagined that Martin would lead the NFL in rushing last year considering how bad one of his ankles were the previous two seasons. Martin came in to last year's training camp over his injury problems and won fantasy come back player of the year in our eyes and we expect him to have another big season in 2005. Their schedule seems a bit harder so he might not do as well but he still should be a quality fantasy starter for you.
3. Is Coles still worth drafting as a quality fantasy starter?
There is no question that he, at times, has been a pretty solid starter but last year his productivity dropped off and Coles only scored one touchdown last season which was the product of a half back option pass from RB Clinton Portis.
New offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger is good at taking advantage of what a player does best so look for Coles to be much more productive this season. That said, Coles should be a productive second and third fantasy receiver.
4. Is TE Doug Jolley worth selecting as a fantasy starter?
At one point of his career, early on, Jolley looked like he might be a pretty solid fantasy tight end but he seemed to fall out of favor with the team and became expendable this off-season.
Heimerdinger likes to use the tight ends in his offense to catch the football so there is a good chance Jolley will be more productive than he had been recently with the Raiders.
5. Is their fantasy defense worth drafting as a starter or backup?
There are a lot of issues with their defense at this point. For one, star DE John Abraham has yet to sign his one-year franchise tender and no one knows for sure when he will report to the team.
Their best run-stopping DT Jason Ferguson left via free agency and his void is going to be hard to fill.
Their secondary lost their best cornerback in Donnie Abraham to retirement and don't have anyone readily available to replace him.
When you sum it all up, it's going to hard for the team to overcome all of these issues which is why you should select them as your backup.