The Oakland Raiders are notorious for making mistakes. However, even Oakland can get it right sometimes. Rod Streater was signed as an undrafted free agent out of Temple prior to the 2012 season, made the roster, and caught 38 passes. In 2013, Streater took a big step forward, leading Oakland in receiving with 60 receptions for 888 yards. He also added four touchdowns, which tied for second on the team. Clearly Streater’s career is trending in the right direction. As he heads into his third season, which is often a prosperous one for receivers, can Rod emerge as a regular fantasy starter?
On a team with plenty of boom-or-bust receivers such as Denarius Moore, Andre Holmes, and to a lesser degree James Jones, Streater’s steady play stands out. He has a fairly decent chance of leading the team in receptions. Although Rod is typically typecast as a possession receiver, he has generated plays of over 60 yards in each of his first two seasons. He is capable of big games, as he caught seven passes for 130 yards and a touchdown last year in a loss to the New York Jets. Oakland will not win many games, giving their receivers a chance to compile numbers while in comeback mode.
So far in his short career, Streater has played with a number of different quarterbacks, and the only truly decent one he has worked with is Carson Palmer. Fading veteran Matt Schaub is currently Oakland’s starter. Maybe rookie Derek Carr will be the long-term answer for the Raiders, but Carr will be learning on the job once he gets a chance. The instability behind center has stunted Rod’s growth as a player. In fact, it would be hard to see him exceeding last year’s numbers with another quarterback shuffle ahead. With Jones being an established veteran, it is possible he could steal a lot of Streater’s thunder. Oakland has to play a number of teams with strong defenses.
Even if Streater ends up as Oakland’s top receiver, that does not make him all that valuable in fantasy. The Raiders represent a parched desert in the fantasy soil and we don’t see that changing anytime soon. If you are in a deeper league, Rod might be okay as your last receiver on the bench. In smaller settings, he is nothing more than a higher-level free agent.