Now that the Super Bowl has come and gone, it’s time for us to get back to focusing on the task at hand; the off-season of the Las Vegas Raiders. While the majority of the fan base remains split on what to do about Derek Carr and the quarterback position, the rest of us have taken it upon ourselves to evaluate the entirety of the roster from top to bottom. The Raiders will have a few individuals set to be come free agents. Running back, Jalen Richard, is one that they should definitely consider re-signing.
The Las Vegas Raiders Should Re-Sign Jalen Richard
Jalen Richard has enjoyed a successful start to his career as a change of pace and receiving running back for the Las Vegas Raiders. He was signed by the Raiders as an undrafted free agent in 2016. Since being drafted, Richard has ever been injured, playing in all 64 games of his career. It’s certainly true when they say that one of your biggest assets is your availability. Richard has also managed to rack up an impressive five yards per carry and eight yards per reception throughout the course of his young career.
What he lacks in touchdown numbers, he makes up for in total scrimmage yards and as a receiving threat out of the backfield. The only downside to Richard’s career, thus far, would be his inability to keep the ball off the ground, having fumbled 13 times in four years as a backup. It is important to note that eight of the fumbles came during the 2017 season. Richard only fumbled twice during the 2019 season, so those numbers have definitely come down.
Now that we’ve covered the statistical reasons as to why the Raiders should re-sign Jalen Richard, let’s look at what it would cost financially. Just last off-season, Richard signed a 1 year/$3 million deal. One could only assume that if the Raiders wanted to keep Richard, then a similar annual salary would be what starts the discussion. The Raiders are currently projected to have $53 million in available cap space.
With the Raiders not really having any big names that need to be re-signed, there is no reason for me to believe that they couldn’t re-sign Richard if they really wanted to. On top of the Raiders not having many big re-signings to get done, this year’s free agency class is also expected to be on the weaker side. The Raiders would be lucky if guys like Chris Jones, Byron Jones, and Jadeveon Clowney made it to free agency, but that is far from a guarantee at this point. Even if they do, there will definitely be a bidding war for each one of those players.
In conclusion, there is absolutely no reason Jalen Richard should be allowed to become a free agent this off-season. Throw in the fact that the older and less reliable DeAndre Washington is also poised for free agency, and it’s clear to see why the Raiders should waste no time in re-signing Richard. Re-signing Richard would be a great depth move by the Raiders, and would also be considered very low-risk/high-reward for the team. They would also be rewarding someone who has accepted his role as a backup and is always available when his number is called. Re-signing Richard is the right move here.
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