Marcel Reece's fantasy football value remains quite appealing for at least one more week.
After optimism he would play this week, Raiders RB Darren McFadden unlikely to play today vs Cleveland.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 2, 2012
As unfortunate as this sounds for Darren McFadden and Raiders fans, Reece has proven to be quite reliable in recent weeks. After all, Oakland still presents a solid passing game and it's because of Reece's rushing threat, which keeps the Raiders balanced.
To that end, let's check out what he has already proven and what fantasy implications remain in 2012.
Production Through November
Despite not receiving too many carriers until Week 10 at Baltimore, Reece still contributed nicely to the Raiders offense.
Interestingly enough, the majority of Reece's impact came in the passing game, where he caught 41 passes for 447 yards and one score.
Over the past four games, though, is where the production has skyrocketed.
In that span, Reece has accounted for 270 receiving yards on 23 receptions. His rushing threat has also factored in for Oakland. With 47 carriers between the previous three contests, Reece has run for 225 yards.
Also, his overall production since the beginning of November averages to 123.75 total yards per game. Wow.
Where Reece Truly Impacts
Because of his size and athletic combo, Reece can be utilized in a variety of ways in Oakland's offense.
At 6'1", 255 pounds, Reece's ability to beat linebackers in single coverage and quickly dart through open running lanes is straight up impressive. That's excellent size for a ball-carrier and including great agility makes him a dangerous threat to any defense.
The Raiders then possess a competitive advantage in any short-yardage situation, because Reece can hit inside or go off-tackle. In turn, that presence makes the play-action pass more relevant and enhances Oakland's total balance.
In any medium and long down-and-distance situations, however, Reece can act as a reliable checkdown or screen pass target for yards after the catch. Altogether, Reece can impact Oakland in any type of situation.
And that versatile dependability simply makes him a viable fantasy option.
Raiders' Remaining Schedule
Oakland's remaining schedule is quite favorable.
After the Cleveland Browns in Week 13, the Raiders host the Denver Broncos on a short week and then welcome the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 15. Thereafter are the Carolina Panthers and San Diego Chargers on the road to close out the season.
Cleveland may present a strong defense with the ability to force turnovers and apply quarterback pressure. Still, the Browns are vulnerable to the run and Carson Palmer's passing threat will prevent Cleveland from trying to isolate Reece.
Only the Broncos field a defense capable of limiting Reece, because Denver is simply too well-versed across the board. Nonetheless, his potential can have an impact in this matchup, as the Broncos are suspect at the intermediate level against the pass.
In recent weeks, the Panthers and Chargers are even worse than Cleveland defensively, so producing well on the ground and accumulating solid total yards in those games is quite possible.
The end result is Reece being a constant flex option and a potential No. 2 back moving forward.
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