Hunter Renfrow has only missed one game because of injury, but the Oakland Raiders obviously missed him against the Kansas City Chiefs. The rookie wide receiver has become a dependable target for quarterback Derek Carr. He’s been a big reason why the team has the seventh-best third-down conversion rate in the NFL. At first, it looked like he could be out for the season. However, it’s starting to look like he could be back in time for the last two games. Jon Gruden spoke about Renfrow’s injury after Wednesday’s practice.
“We’re very hopeful that he could return, maybe for the last game or two,” said Gruden. “We’re going to keep him where he is on the active roster. We’re gonna try to do without him for another game or two and hopefully get him back for the Charger game. That’s our wish list, hope list right now for Hunter. We miss him.”
The Raiders wide receiving corps was already lackluster with Renfrow healthy. Now that he’s out, it may be the worst in the NFL. Whether or not the rookie suits up again this season will likely hinge upon if Oakland remains in the playoff race. If they fall flat on their face these next two games, the team is better off putting Renfrow on the injured reserve and not risk his long-term health.
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Raiders Injury Report: Josh Jacobs & Trent Brown Miss Practice
Other than Renfrow, there are a couple of concerning updates on the team’s official injury report. Starting right tackle Trent Brown sat out of Wednesday’s practice with a pectoral injury. He’s been banged up for most of the season, but nothing about a pectoral injury was previously mentioned. Rodney Hudson and Gabe Jackson have been limited in quite a few practices this season, so their listing is much cause for concern.
Josh Jacobs recently revealed that he’s been playing with a fractured shoulder since Week 7 against the Green Bay Packers. He also sat out of Wednesday’s practice. If he hasn’t missed a game yet, it’s unlikely he’s going to soon. The Raiders have been careful with him in practice since the Packers game.
Derek Carr Praises Josh Jacobs’ Toughness
Jacobs runs with a lot of power, so it’s pretty crazy that he’s been able to sustain high production while playing with a bum shoulder. Derek Carr lauded the rookie’s toughness.
“If Josh wasn’t able to play I would completely understand with what he’s dealing with,” said Carr on Wednesday. “But the fact that he keeps suiting up and… running with the style he runs with, I don’t think enough can be said about that guy.”
Jacobs just passed 1,000 rushing yards on the season, the first Raiders rookie to do so. Even with his hurt shoulder, he’s still the favorite to win Offensive Rookie of the Year. Just like with Renfrow, how long the Raiders let him play will likely hinge on if the team is still in the playoff race. There’s no need to risk top rookies if there’s nothing left to play for.