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Chuck Pagano: Donald Brown earned the opportunity

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When the Colts traded a first-round pick to Cleveland early this season for running back Trent Richardson, it’s a safe bet that their plan wasn’t to have Richardson coming off the bench in December.

Unfortunately for the Colts, that’s how things have played out this season and Richardson was the No. 2 back behind Donald Brown against Tennessee in Sunday’s 22-14 Indianapolis win. When asked about the reason for the change, Pagano played up Brown’s performance rather than Richardson’s dismal production since joining the Colts this season.

“We just felt [Brown] earned the opportunity,” Pagano said, via Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star. “Donnie earned the opportunity the way he was working and running the football. Felt like, we’re still going to use two backs, but [Brown] earned the opportunity.”

As for Richardson, Pagano said that he “handled it awesome” when he was informed that Brown would be taking the starting role on Sunday. Brown ran 14 times for 54 yards and a touchdown on Sunday, numbers that weren’t staggering but they were an uptick on Richardson’s recent work and they came in a much-needed win for the Colts. That should be enough to keep the same setup at running back again next weekend.

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14 Responses to “Chuck Pagano: Donald Brown earned the opportunity”
  1. jerruhjones says: Dec 2, 2013 12:24 PM

    There haven’t been many bright spots for the Browns this season, but getting a 1st rounder for TR is one of them!

  2. islandgechee says: Dec 2, 2013 12:28 PM

    That’s just coach speak for:” Wish I had that draft pick back right now”…the Brownies traded him for a reason now Pagano has first hand knowledge himself…He’s to slow to the hole and to stiff to make those quick cuts necessary once those running lanes start to get clogged

  3. cajunaise says: Dec 2, 2013 12:32 PM

    Bought my Donald Brown jersey for $9.99 two seasons ago. Sometimes you have to hold onto fashion for a little bit before it becomes cool…

  4. justbust says: Dec 2, 2013 12:37 PM

    The colts do not have the line to compliment Trent’s style. He isn’t quick enough. The line cannot hold holes open long enough for Trent to get thru them. Put the much quicker d brown in and that line doesn’t have to be able to hold blocks that long because dollars brown just went thru them. Anyone can clearly see this….

  5. cbrown386 says: Dec 2, 2013 12:41 PM

    Obviously hindsight is 20/20 and I’m sure everyone in Indy would love to either have Josh Gordon or that pick back, but it is what it is. For the time being, this is the best thing that they can do. Brown has been there for years, understands the offense, and is making the most of his opportunity. Let Richardson sit back and figure things out for a minute before sending him in there on every obvious running play to get stuffed.

    Honestly, Richardson didn’t look too bad in his limited work yesterday. A midseason trade to a completely different offense isn’t good for anyone and maybe a little time away from the field will let him grow into his role.

  6. PeterKingLovesCoqAVin says: Dec 2, 2013 12:41 PM

    Where are all the pundits who vomited nonsense about how dominant Trent Richardson would be on a good team? The Browns have replaced him with the decaying corpse of Willis McGahee and had no real drop off in performance.

    Mike Holmgren looks like an idiot now.

    And the Colts cement yet another terrible trade. Maybe next season they’ll send a 1st rounder to Dallas for Miles Austin.

  7. mgdsquiggy17 says: Dec 2, 2013 12:46 PM

    “The colts do not have the line to compliment Trent’s style.”

    Does anyone have a line that is complimentary to a 2 YPC back?

  8. justbust says: Dec 2, 2013 12:52 PM

    I want to compare him to Steven Jackson. Jackson is big at 6 3 and that length showed in his strides. Only difference is Trent is much shorter takes shorter strides, needs to bulk up slightly more because he doesn’t look anything like Jackson. Jackson hits the hole hard might break a tackle, Trent kinda just lays down beaten in same situation, not enough power and violence. Go work those legs buddy u aren’t doing anything else till they look like Jackson’s !

  9. howiefeltersnatch says: Dec 2, 2013 12:56 PM

    Lol at Mike Holmgren for saying he’d quit if the front office traded Richardson

  10. taintedlombardis says: Dec 2, 2013 1:02 PM

    Another week. Another Luck stinker. Looks like Foles could be edging out RG3 as the undisputed best pick of the draft…

  11. rockthered1286 says: Dec 2, 2013 1:29 PM

    Former Saban RB. Nuff said.

  12. xli2006 says: Dec 2, 2013 1:34 PM

    Browns Fans do remember what they gave up to get Richardson in the 1st place right?

    Lets recap shall we:
    -Half their draft to move up a spot
    -Paid his entire bonus and will carry most of his cap

    The Colts were decimated with losses of Bradshaw and Vick Ballard, adding a RB was essential.

    If anyone who understands this Colts team doesn’t recognize the issues on the OLine plus other injuries that effect the running game (D Thomas at Guard, Dwayne Allen a blocking TE) then they just arent paying attention. I’m not defending Richardson, but the problems he is having are deeper than the stats.

    When the Colts get their OLine back, have an offseason/training camp to work with Richardson things will improve. He’s only been in the league since last April and had a pretty stout Rookie year for a rather mediocre Browns offense.

    Now would anyone like to compare the decision making of the Browns and the Colts over the last decade? I would love to have that conversation. The success of the Colts and the mediocrity of the Browns as franchises speaks for itself.

  13. 63deuceman says: Dec 2, 2013 1:34 PM

    Another week. Another Luck stinker. Looks like Foles could be edging out RG3 as the undisputed best pick of the draft…
    _ _ _ _ _

    Wasn’t Russell Wilson in that draft?

  14. war27 says: Dec 2, 2013 2:24 PM

    More proof that fantasy football fans/players don’t know squat about football.

    TR’s greatness was a creation of fantasy football players. Even the media fell for it.

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