Colts General Manager Ryan Grigson says the reason he gave up next year’s first-round draft pick to acquire running back Trent Richardson from the Browns is simple: He’s serious about doing everything he can to win.
“We have a commitment to win,” Grigson told the Indianapolis Star. “That goal is something we strive for, regardless of circumstances or anything that’s put in our path. That’s how we roll.”
Grigson has loved Richardson since evaluating him before last year’s draft, although the Colts, who chose Andrew Luck first overall before the Browns took Richardson third, never seriously considered taking him. Grigson would have been ecstatic if you had told him before last year’s draft that in a year and a half he’d have both Luck and Richardson on his team.
“The thing about him is he plays the game the way it’s meant to be played,” Grigson said of Richardson. “He was born to run the football. He’s a powerful back, a back that can avoid tacklers or run over them. He can catch the ball. He adds an element on third down. He’s got a pretty broad skill set in a very compact 220-pound frame who happens to run a 4.48.”
There is, however, one nagging question: With all of Richardson’s talent, why has he averaged only 3.5 yards a carry so far in his NFL career? Grigson suggested that opposing defenses were stacking the box to stop Richardson because the Browns didn’t have much of a passing threat, but they won’t be able to do that now that Richardson is lining up behind Luck.
“I know the numbers,” Grigson said. “But the yardage is there. You see it when you’re watching the film. Obviously if you have a guy that’s your main threat in the offense, that’s who defenses are going to key up. Trent isn’t even near his ceiling. We’re talking about the third pick in the draft and that’s not because he’s a ham-and-egger.”
Grigson has no doubt that Richardson can help the Colts win.