Browns deal Richardson to Colts for 1st-round pick
Trent Richardson didn't fit into the Browns' plans. They're pushing forward without him.
Cleveland traded the powerful running back to the Indianapolis Colts on Wednesday, a stunning move just two games into this season and only one year after drafting Richardson in the first round.
Richardson was dealt for a first-round selection in next year's draft, when the Browns will have two opening-round picks and 10 overall.
Cleveland is rebuilding and the team hopes to use those picks — seven in the first four rounds — to help turn around a floundering franchise mired in losing for more than a decade. Such a reversal was what the Browns had in mind when they took Richardson with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2011 draft. The former Alabama star seemed to have it all: power, speed and good hands.
But Richardson apparently isn't the kind of back Cleveland's front office wants or one for first-year coach Rob Chudzinski's offensive system. Richardson, who rushed for 950 yards as a rookie despite playing most of last season with two broken ribs, gained 105 yards on 31 carries in Cleveland's two losses this season.
He lacked the explosiveness the Browns' new regime was looking for, and it may not have helped that Richardson made it clear he wanted the ball more.
However, Browns CEO Joe Banner said there was nothing negative about Richardson, and the team simply seized an opportunity to improve. The Colts have been looking for a back since Vick Ballard suffered a season-ending knee injury.
“This was more about the moment presented itself, and based on the situation the Colts found themselves in, it wasn't something where we could say, ‘Can you wait three weeks to think about this or learn more?' We thought it was a move to make us better.”
Banner said the Browns' first conversation with the Colts about Richardson was Tuesday. Banner said the team is not looking to make other trades but would be willing to listen if it could make them better. In addition, the Browns are bringing in free agent running back Willis McGahee for a physical and will sign him if he passes.
Earlier in the day, Richardson talked to Minnesota reporters about the pressure and expectations that come with being such a high draft pick.
“I think people make it more pressure than what it is,” he said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.