This has led many to question what in the world is Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome exactly thinking.
Released by the Oakland Raiders in last year’s offseason, Richardson was out of football for the entirety of this past season.
The 25 year old running back last played with the Colts in the 2014 season, when he rushed for 519 rushing yards on 159 carries (3.3 ypc average) and 3 rushing touchdowns. He was eventually benched late in the season for backup running back Dan “Boom” Herron due to underwhelming results.
After Richardson was declared inactive for that season’s AFC Championship game, he was released shortly thereafter by the Colts, as there were growing team complaints about him being overweight in addition to being unproductive.
Of course, Colts fans want to relive the Richardson era of Colts rushing about as much as much as they’d like to hear a musical symphony featuring rusty nails scratching on a chalk board.
The Colts surrendered their 2014 1st round draft choice for Richardson in a trade with Cleveland, but on the bright side, the Browns ultimately used that first round pick to trade for the talented, yet troubled Johnny Manziel–who appears to be destined to become a bust by his own right.
The pick itself eventually became Philadelphia Eagles pass rusher Marcus Smith, who has 1.5 sacks and 7 tackles in two seasons total–indicating that the former Colts 2014 first round pick wreaks of bust all-around for all teams that came into contact with it.
Still, it’s downright perplexing that the Ravens still think there’s something salvageable in the colossal running back bust. It’s a “low risk” signing, but whether it’s actually “high reward” appears to be increasingly doubtful at this point.
Yes, Richardson was the former 3rd overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns, but he’s already been deemed expendable by three NFL organizations in what may be an increasingly short-lived 4-year NFL career.
There may be some talent yet hidden there, but so far, no NFL team has successfully been able to untap it or get through to Richardson–who once again dealt with weight issues in his latest stop with the Raiders before being released.