Jalen Richard, RB, Oakland Raiders

The encore presentation of Jon Gruden’s Raiders brought plenty of surprises for us in Week 1. Amari Cooper catching only 1 pass on 3 targets was definitely a hot button item for fantasy owners. A player who saw surprisingly heavy usage though was running back, Jalen Richard.

Richard was second on the team with 11 targets of which he hauled in 9 for 55 yards. His 11 targets were third most amongst RB’s in Week 1 behind only Melvin Gordon and Alvin Kamara. Richard also logged 5 carries for 24 yards. Richard ran circles around presumed RB2, Doug Martin.

This new-look offense was not a good one for the Raiders as they just looked plain sloppy on offense. You would think there will be some readjustments going forward and an over compensation of targets for Amari Cooper could be in line as early as Week 2. Richard has always shown great potential in limited opportunities, however, and if he is finally granted a solid role as a pass catching specialist out of the backfield, he could become a solid Flex option in PPR leagues.

Keep an eye on Richard’s usage going forward, especially with Deandre Washington nearing a return and further cloudying the Raiders backfield.