It was looking for a while that the Las Vegas Raiders would keep four running backs on the roster but that appears to be wrong. They traded rookie Lynn Bowden Jr. and have made another cut. Per Paul Gutierrez of ESPN, the team is letting go of Theo Riddick.
Source: #Raiders cutting RB Theo Riddick but hope to keep him on practice squad as vet exception after impressing in just 2 1/2 weeks of camp.
— Paul Gutierrez (@PGutierrezESPN) September 5, 2020
Riddick was signed late in training camp to compete for the backup spot. With the news that Bowden was traded, it’s clear why the Raiders brought in more help. Riddick has put together some solid campaigns in the past but is more of a receiver out of the backfield. Considering Las Vegas wasn’t going to let go of Jalen Richard, it was always going to be tough for him to make the roster.
He’s got a lot of experience and could find another team to sign him. However, it sounds like the Raiders would welcome him on the practice squad if nobody picks him up.
Devontae Booker Set to Be Josh Jacobs’ Backup
With Riddick out of the picture, Devontae Booker is set to be Josh Jacobs‘ backup, according to Levi Damien of the USA Today. The former Denver Broncos running back reportedly had a strong training camp and should be a solid backup for Jacobs. Booker put together a strong rookie season in Denver but never caught on past that.
Jacobs is the bell cow and he’ll get the bulk of the carries. That said, he did suffer injuries last year so it was important for the Raiders to find a solid backup. Booker is comparable to DeAndre Washington, who backed Jacobs up last year. He should be a nice complement to Jacobs and Richard.
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Jon Gruden ‘Took It Personally’ When Josh Jacobs Lost OROY
If he can stay healthy this season, being Jacobs’ backup probably won’t be a ton of fun. The running back was a stud last year and deserved to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year award. He ended getting snubbed and that apparently irked head coach Jon Gruden.
“I think that people out here, Oakland and Las Vegas, and Jon Gruden especially, thought he should have been Rookie of the Year,” Vic Tafur of The Athletic told CBS Sports. “So when he wasn’t Rookie of the Year, I think Jon [Gruden] took it personally. Jon was upset about it. I think he wants to make people realize they made a big mistake.”
Josh Jacobs 📈
• Jon Gruden took it personally when Jacobs wasn't Offensive ROY
• Jacobs will have around 40 catches in 2020
• Will have more carries, catches, and yards than last season
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) September 4, 2020
Jacobs was already one of the most productive running backs in the NFL last year and it’s sounding like Gruden is going to try and make sure he has a statement season this year. The coach already loves to run the ball and it makes it a lot easier to do it when you have a great running back with a chip on his shoulder. Jacobs didn’t catch a lot of passes last year which is the one criticism you can make about him. That shouldn’t be the case again in 2020.