The Colts traded a first-round pick for Trent Richardson … which was very bad.
First, it was the Cleveland Browns who made the grave mistake of using a first-round pick on former Alabama running back Trent Richardson. In the same draft Andrew Luck was selected No. 1 overall by the Indianapolis Colts, the Browns used the No. 3 pick on Richardson.
After a solid rookie year in Cleveland, however, the Browns traded the former Crimson Tide star to the Colts two games into the 2013 campaign in exchange for a 2014 first-round pick. Indy thought they’d be pairing two of the best players from the 2012 draft class, but oh boy was that far from the case.
Richardson bombed with the Colts and lasted just 29 games with the team.
Dreadful. After that, Richardson signed a two-year, $3.85 million deal with the then-Oakland Raiders in 2015, but was released five months into the contract and never played a down for them. The Baltimore Ravens then picked him up the following year, but did the same thing — signed him in April and cut ties with him in late August.
Since then, Richardson was arrested on domestic violence charges (back in 2017) and got a second chance in the CFL with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, which was another stint shrouded in controversy. Finally, he got one last opportunity in the now-defunct Alliance of American Football, where he played for the Birmingham Iron. We all know what happened there.
But how about the details of this deal? Well, it was bad for everyone.
Let’s start with the silly, silly Browns, who used the first-round pick the Colts gifted them to trade up for … Johnny Manziel. The former Heisman Trophy winner played in 14 games for Cleveland and went 2-6 as a starter. He was out of the league after the 2015 season after off-the-field issues contributed to his demise.
It sure would’ve been nice for the Colts to have a first-round pick in the stacked 2014 NFL Draft, but what are you gonna do? Richardson, in his 29 games with Indy, logged 977 rushing yards with six touchdowns and 494 receiving yards with one touchdown before he was gone. He averaged a horrific 3.1 yards per carry.
He contributed absolutely nothing in the 2014 playoffs too, which was the team’s best run since the Peyton Manning days. Luck and the Colts lost to Tom Brady and the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game that gave birth to Deflategate.
It’s hard to blame the Colts here, however. Richardson had a solid rookie year and Indy figured it could rescue him from a downtrodden Browns franchise. After all, Richardson rushed for 1,679 yards and 21 touchdowns in his final year at Alabama, both of which set SEC records.
But alas, it was an abomination for all parties involved.