Richard is expected to return to the Raiders on a one-year deal worth $3.095 million after the team placed a second-round tender on the running back Thursday, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports. Fellow running backs Marshawn Lynch and Doug Martin are slated to hit free agency, which could well lead to some changes in Oakland's 2019 backfield composition. Richard's ability as a pass-catcher is something the Raiders clearly value and prefer to keep in the mix. The 25-year-old was effective in that area in 2018, as Richard more than doubled his previous career high and recorded 68 total receptions. He also improved upon his ball security with three fumbles (two lost) over a career-high 412 offensive snaps. In 2017, three of Richard's eight fumbles were lost. All this played a role in the Raiders wanting him back for at least one more year, as any other suitors would have to surrender a second-round pick in order to sign the fourth-year back.
Richard rushed for one yard on three carries and caught two passes on as many targets for 17 yards during Sunday's 35-3 loss to the Chiefs. Richard saw a significant uptick in usage during his third season with the Raiders, totaling a career-high 123 touches for 866 yards and one score in 16 games. Despite a season-ending groin injury to starting running back Marshawn Lynch, Richard's value in standard leagues was capped by the resurgence of newcomer Doug Martin. Nonetheless, Richard was an intriguing option for PPR owners in deeper leagues given his 68 receptions on 81 targets for 607 yards. He'll be a restricted free agent in 2019, but the Raiders now have a clearer understanding of his talent as a pass catcher out of the backfield.
Richard (ankle) was a full participant in Thursday's practice. As anticipated, Richard's status for the season finale in Kansas City was never in much peril after he was limited by an ankle issue at Wednesday's practice. With a full session now under his belt, Richard should reprise his duties as the top change-of-pace option behind starting running back Doug Martin. The No. 2 role hasn't prevented Richard from offering utility in deeper leagues the past four weeks, as he's cleared 50 yards from scrimmage on three occasions and hauled in 13 receptions in total.
Richard (ankle) was limited at practice Wednesday, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports. Richard's status will be updated over the Raiders' final two practices of the week, but he'll likely work in his usual change-of-pace role in Sunday's season finale against the Chiefs if his ankle proves to be a non-issue. While working behind Doug Martin for much of the season, Richard has offered a degree of PPR utility while routinely ranking as a prominent option in a beleaguered Oakland passing attack.
Richard accounted for 11 yards and a touchdown on four carries, along with four receptions for 40 yards during Monday's 27-14 win against the Broncos. Richard didn't establish himself as a high-volume scorer during his first two seasons as a pro between 2016 and 2017, compiling five total touchdowns across 32 games for the Silver and Black. Even for a player with minimal expectations in that department, a 14-game scoring drought was beginning to wear on fantasy GMs, particularly for those abstaining from PPR scoring as 52.9 percent of Richard's pass-catching output this season was attributed to receptions entering Monday night. Week 17 lines up for an explosive Richard performance, as the Raiders face a Chiefs defense that has allowed the sixth-most receiving yards (785) and the fourth-most receiving touchdowns (five) to running backs this season.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
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