Coach Damien Hardwick is confident Richmond remain in the premiership hunt despite their "spluttering" first half of the season that has effectively left them two wins and a significant percentage adrift of the top four.
Tigers players were left shell-shocked on Sunday night when they suffered a four-point AFL loss to West Coast at Optus Stadium.
Richmond led by 22 points midway through the final quarter, but the Eagles booted the final four goals of the match to snatch the 13.7 (85) to 12.9 (81) victory.
The result left the eighth-placed Tigers nursing a 7-6 record heading into their bye.
With Brisbane (versus North Melbourne) and Port Adelaide (versus Gold Coast) hot favourites to win their next match, the Tigers are likely to find themselves two wins adrift of fifth spot with nine games to play, leaving their top-four hopes hanging by a thread.
Richmond finished third in their premiership years of 2017, 2019, and 2020 - but they may have to launch their flag assault from outside the four this year.
Players such as Tom Lynch, Toby Nankervis, David Astbury, and Ivan Soldo are still on the injury list, and Hardwick hopes his team will hit their stride in the second half of the season.
"We're in the hunt," Hardwick said.
"We're like a lot of sides, spluttering along at the moment. We get some players back, then we lose some players.
"There are sides I wouldn't say are having a charmed run, but are coping well with their injuries.
"Sides like us that are battling along the way and waiting until we get our side back together and start to gel.
"We probably haven't hit that run of form as yet. Hopefully it comes after a bye."
Hardwick is keen to keep forward Callum Coleman-Jones in the side even when Lynch is ready to return from a knee injury.
"They are both wonderful players," Hardwick said.
"Lynch has been around a long time and CJ is just learning his craft. I hope they can play in the same side; we just have to manage it the best we can."
Hardwick said his team's lack of composure cost them dearly against West Coast.
But one bright note was the successful return of Kane Lambert, who tallied 27 disposals and two goals in his first game since round six.
Australian Associated Press