Since it’s April Fool’s Day, we decided to look back at the biggest joke in recent Colts history: the trade for Trent Richardson.
Coming off of winning Executive of the Year, Ryan Grigson was looking to make another splash move with his team. The Colts had unexpectedly made the playoffs in his first year in 2012. Now he was looking for someone to help make that final leap into championship contention.
Enter Trent Richardson. He was the number 3 overall pick in the 2012 draft. But in just one year, the Browns were willing to part with their running back. Grigson decided that 2013 was a year they could win it all, so he sent a 2014 first-round pick to Cleveland in exchange for Richardson.
Initially, people around the league couldn’t believe what the Browns had done. Everyone panned it as another Cleveland being Cleveland moment. The Colts now had two of the top 3 picks from the 2012 draft, as they had Andrew Luck quarterbacking the team.
It quickly became apparent that there was a reason the Browns were so willing to get rid of him so soon. In the 14 games Richardson played with the Colts that year, he only scored three touchdowns. Worse than that, he only accumulated 458 yards on 157 attempts.
That paltry 2.9 yards per attempt made him a liability in the running game. Worse still is that he fumbled 3 times in the regular season, and fumbled on his first carry in the playoffs against the Chiefs. While the Colts made it to the Divisional Round, Richardson didn’t put them over the hump.
People were willing to give Richardson a pass in 2013 because he got traded to the Colts midseason. But now with a full offseason under his belt, a lot was expected of him in 2014. That season wasn’t much better, and in some respects may have been worse.
Richardson only ran for 519 yards and 3 touchdowns in 15 games. He was suspended for the final game of the season and only played one snap in the playoffs that year. Richardson was a complete bust and cost the Colts a first-round pick that could have been used on other greater needs.
This was one of the many blunders that Grigson made in his tenure that ultimately cost him his job. His mismanagement of the roster also cut Luck’s career short as he retired at the age of only 29. This was the biggest joke of all trades.
Colts fans can be happy that they now have a GM who knows what they’re doing in Chris Ballard. There won’t be any stupid trades like this in the future.