The Oakland Raiders have re-signed restricted free agent RB Jalen Richard, the club announced Wednesday.
Richard originally joined the Silver and Black after participating on a tryout basis at the team’s rookie mini-camp in May 2016. Over his three seasons in Oakland, the 5-foot-8, 205-pound running back has played in all 48 career games with two starts, totaling 1,025 rushing yards on 194 carries (5.3 avg.) with three touchdowns and adding 1,057 receiving yards on 124 receptions with three touchdowns. Richard has also recorded 62 punt returns for 464 yards and 25 kickoff returns for 492 yards and was named a Pro Bowl alternate as a return specialist in 2016.
In 2018, Richard played in all 16 games with one start and set career highs in receptions (68) and receiving yards (607), while adding 55 carries for 259 yards with one touchdown. His 68 receptions tied for the team lead and also tied with Marcus Allen for the fourth-most receptions by a running back in franchise history.
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Head coach Jon Gruden praised Richard on multiple occasions last season, at one point saying Richard “might be the MVP of our team” and comparing him to former Raiders and 49ers back Charlie Garner.
After signing free agent Isaiah Crowell last month, the Raiders’ running backs group includes Crowell, Richard, DeAndre Washington and Chris Warren III. Warren spent last season on injured reserve after leading the Raiders in rushing yards during the preseason. Doug Martin and Marshawn Lynch, the team’s lead backs in 2018, are both unrestricted free agents. A native of Alexandria, La., Richard played four years at Southern Mississippi, appearing in 41 games with 29 starts. He totaled 2,082 rushing yards on 397 carries with 19 touchdowns and added 83 receptions for 675 yards with five touchdowns.
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