Jim Brown not impressed with “ordinary” Trent Richardson

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If the Cleveland Browns select running back Trent Richardson tonight, the greatest Browns running back of them all will not be impressed.

Jim Brown said today on ESPN Radio that he doesn’t think Richardson is a great running back who’s going to make a great impact in Cleveland.

“I’m not overwhelmed with it,” Brown said of the idea that the Browns could take Richardson. “The problem is that he’s ordinary. I think he’s ordinary.”

Asked what about him is ordinary, Brown said, “the size, the speed, his moves.”

Asked if any running backs in this year’s draft impress him, Brown said, “Not really. It’s not a good year, obviously.”

Brown also said he wasn’t impressed with Mark Ingram, the Saints’ first-round draft pick last year, and he suggested that if Richardson couldn’t start ahead of Ingram when they both played at Alabama, that means Richardson can’t be better than Ingram.

The 76-year-old Brown, who was Cleveland’s first-round pick in the 1957 NFL draft, said he doesn’t see many impact running backs left in pro football.

“When I watch football today I see a game of quarterbacks,” Brown said. “Protecting quarterbacks, throwing the ball, short passes, long passes, all kinds of passes.”

And in a game of quarterbacks, Brown doesn’t see the point of drafting an ordinary running back.

125 responses to “Jim Brown not impressed with “ordinary” Trent Richardson

  1. Jim Brown also thought Barry Sanders was too small and too slow to make an impact.

  2. Drafting a RB high is a risky move. You can probably get someone for 1/10th the price who is about as good.

  3. Hmm well I think the defences Brown once ran through would be far below “ordinary” compared to what Ingram has and will run through. The man is a beast!

  4. “Ordinary?” Ouch!

    His comment about not being able to stat over Ingram is interesting. Never thought of it like that. Maybe he’s on to something.

  5. It was probably a lot easier to look special when everyone you played against was smaller and slower than you, and lineman weighed 205lbs. Thanks for the input though.

  6. Nothing like a 76 year-old has been trashing a player he knows nothing about. I hope Trent Richardson is motivated to prove the bitter old goat wrong.

    Is Jim Brown impressed with anyone other than himself? Never hear anything positive out of him. Don’t go away mad, Jim just go away!

  7. Jim Brown was a complete beast, but he seems fairly sour at his old age. Everyone who makes these comments has a 50/50 chance of being right, but just because Brown was a beast doesn’t mean he has a great eye for talent. We’ve seen that video a few times, Detroit fans know among many others…

  8. Jim Brown and Joe Namath have taken too many knocks to the head. These legends don’t realize that by opening their mouths, a whole new generation of NFL fans will recognize them as crotchety old men and not heroes.

  9. When are his concussions going to take their toll so he’ll shut up. Then PFT will talk about how concussion cause him to be in his state and how he needs to sue the nfl.

  10. I love that Jim Brown isn’t aware enough of his own comments to recognize that making such a damning statement requires more supporting details than “his size, his speed, his moves.”

  11. “I’m famous and I’mma give you my opinions, and because I’m famous, you should listen to me regardless of my expertise on the subject, and I don’t have to back up anything I feel like uttering.”

  12. I don’t think he’s ordinary. But, I agree. Richardson is not as explosive as a Adrian Peterson. He has moves, but they aren’t as sudden as the top backs in the game.

  13. Okay I can buy everything Brown says except when he knocks Richardson’s size. That man is huge and defined. He is so ripped I suspect that he as used steroids or HGH at some point. Either that or just really hard work and good genes.
    I respect Jim Brown because he was a great player but in general I hate when former stars like Brown and Joe Namath critique current NFL teams and players. The game has changed greatly since they last played and they need to understand that.

  14. this coming from the guy who was “advising” little randy lerner on the team, talent, coaches, etc. for a bunch of years. cause that worked out so well… last i checked, talent evaluation wasn’t his strong suit.

    god forbid we draft someone with skills AND character. jim, i have 2 words for you: william. green. or how about maurice & clarett? you talked them up back in the day…great analysis there.

  15. Yeah, Jim Brown does seem kind of grouchy in his comments, but it shouldn’t be a surprise. Brown is old school where results spoke louder than than talking heads. Do you really think Brown would be complementary of someone who hasn’t done anything significant in the NFL yet?

  16. Go drink your prune juice and change your diaper Jim. You were the greatest RB ever!Be proud of that, and it would be nice to see you support the young guy who may become the face of the Browns franchise instead of being a crotchity old man.

  17. Somebody tell that bitter old man to shut up and die already. Nobody cares what you think Jim, go away.

  18. “Jim Brown also thought Barry Sanders was too small and too slow to make an impact.”

    And he thought Ingram was a waste of a 1st and was right. Yea Brown is a little bit of a hater sometimes, but hes kind of right. In today’s NFL, if you arent a 100% CLEAR game changer in the RB position, you dont deserve a top 5 pick

  19. At least he makes a valid point, Richardson couldn’t beat out Mark Ingram at Alabama. If I was the Browns..select Justin Blackmon

  20. I don’t really put much stock in what an old bitter washed up woman beater has to say. Sit down before you break a hip Jim.

  21. Another reason why I’ll always say Barry was better.

    Barry doesn’t have to keep reminding the rest of the world that he was the best running back in his day.

  22. Jim Brown is cranky and doesnt want to see his place in NFL history reduced. The Browns have catered to this guy forever, when Holmgren didnt want to give him total access, he got mad and took his ball and went home.

  23. I disagree with Brown about Richardson, but the point about today’s NFL being all about QB’s and passing is spot on…….I wonder at what point the ground game will come back into vogue??
    Will we never again see teams trying to control the ball and clock on a regular basis as an offensive philosophy, not just to run out the last 5 minutes with a lead? I’d love to see my team run about 35-40 times per game, and I bet they’d win a lot more if they did. They won’t though……..

  24. Jim Brown was a beast in his day but the the game is nothing like it was when he payed. Jim you have no right to say who is ordinary or not. You can say “I am not sold yet because I want the best for my Browns…or 1,000 other things. Trent Richardson will be a Brown tonight by 8:30pm or he will go at #3 if a trade happens. College football doesn’t always start the best player. Mark was older. Mark earned he time as a senior believe me Trent could have started at any other college.

  25. Even at 76 Jim Brown could kick 95% of y’all a$$es right now. That man was an absolute beast in his day.

  26. Hey Jim, you had average speed and no moves. The only thing you really had going for you was that you were bigger than everyone else.

    There is nothing ordinary about a RB who benches over 500 lbs and squats over 600 lbs. Richardson will physically punish defenders much like you did, Jim. I hope the Browns give him your number you bitter old bag of bones.

  27. Was he asked this question or did he just bring this topic up? A lot of people are assuming the latter here as PFT laid it out for you to discuss and they’re using a little controversy for traffic. You guys bit. hell, even I did. However, I read what Jim Brown said and I actually agree. I do not think Trent Richardson will be on an All Pro team any time soon as I was not impressed with him in college. Great stats, sure, but he seems to be lacking that something special which is what Jim was getting at.

    He is in more of a position to speak about great running backs over anybody who frequents this website so it’s amusing to think you know it alls know more than him.

  28. I wouldn’t draft a RB at a high round unless he’s gonna carry the heavy load of the offense. Ingram went to the wrong team for success, ask reggie bush. The saints is all about passing, and yet they manage to take 3 Big name RBs, Ricky Williams, bush and ingram, all didn’t fit in their system. Trent would be a beast in the browns system hell Peyton hillis dominated the run and he’s nowhere near as fast and mobile as Trent. Two, it gives colt mccoy a reliable RB who can also catch the ball, if the browns play their cards right, they could get a solid RB, WR, and pass protection early in the draft. I wouldn’t take weeden in the second, I think he’ll be there in the third round.

  29. bangitfootball says: Apr 26, 2012 2:47 PM

    Jim Brown always talked too much. He couldnt carry Trents jockstrap.
    While I find Jim Brown’s statements rather harsh and don’t agree with them, I believe you need to watch some game film on Jim Brown immediately.

  30. When the old man is right, he’s right. Richardson is a pretty good player… but it wasn’t that long ago that Reggie Bush, Cedric Benson, Ronnie Brown, and Cadillac Williams were top 5 RBs considered “Can’t Miss Prospects” and each of them missed big-time.

    Considering Richardson’s speed is about average, he’s been dinged up during his short college career…oh, and he’s a RUNNING BACK, there’s no way he SHOULD go in the top 10. Whomever is stupid enough to draft him to 5, deserves to be picking there for the next 10 years… I just hope it isn’t the Bucs.

  31. I care what Jim Brown thinks about the Browns about as much as I care what Joe Namath thinks about the Jets and Fran Tarkenton thinks about the Vikings.

  32. Jim Brown does not know anything about talent anymore. A few years ago, Jim supported Maurice Clarrett. Trent Richardson may turn out to be ordinary, but he has to be worlds better than Clarrett.

  33. “Jim Brown always talked too much. He couldnt carry Trents jockstrap”

    You do realize that football existed before 1999, right?

    Brown is a curmudgeon, but he was the definition of a beast at RB.

  34. He is right, though.

    Richardson is nothing special.

    Yeah, he used to run over college kids, mainly DBs, but the NFL is different, all those guys are machines, he won’t run them over as easily as he did when he was at Bama, he won’t beat anybody with his quickness or raw speed and the success of pure power backs in the NFL is marginal.

    I can see him having success against teams who play a lot of nickel and dime packages, but unfortunately, he might go to the AFC North, where its all about pressure defense, he will constantly face 8 man boxes paired with a sloppy line, this doesn’t seem to be a good fit.

    Browns, take Blackmon.

  35. If Jim Brown played against today’s players he wouldn’t have put up the numbers he did. He played against guys who worked part time jobs in the offseason!!!! He obviously is full of himself and thinks he is great but really he just benefited from playing against inferior talent.

  36. i don’t watch a ton of college football but didn’t trent richardson run for over 200 yards and 3 Tds in the two games that ingram sat out?
    i think he is a better back than ingram and probably a big part of why ingram kept the starting job is that he was the previous years Heisman trophy winner and was also very good…nothing to do with how good richardson was.
    i haven’t watched him a whole lot but richardsons speed, strength and especially his cuts were impressive to me.

  37. he doesn’t have moves he must not have saw the highlights from last season….particularly the ole miss game that juke move he put on that DB was nasty…I’m sure they will play it tonite….plus the year after Ingram won the heisman he was hurt most the year and Trent took up the slack

  38. Jim was right that football is much more about the quarterback today than ever in years past, but that, ironically, is exactly why he isn’t looking at Richardson with the correctly-colored lenses. He’s comparing Richardson to what running backs did 50 years ago, and that isn’t anything close to fairly evaluating his talents properly. Does he also think that Adrian Peterson or Ray Rice aren’t anything special? Is he unimpressed with what Chris Johnson has achieved in the league so far? Does he think the last truly dominant running back was Barry Sanders?

    Jim Brown was one of the greatest athletes to have ever played the game of football, and this comes from someone who is young enough to be his grandson. But he’s completely wrong about claiming Richardson doesn’t possess the speed or moves needed to be a successful running back.

  39. LMAO.

    JB is funny (and sad).

    But even funnier, is the fact that Any & Every thing on here gets thumbs down.

    Seriously, someone said “Word” and got dislikes.

  40. Jim Brown was without doubt the biggest baddest and best running back ever – 9 seasons, 8 of them he went over 1,000 yards, and that was in a 12 game season.

    He averaged 5.2 yards for his career – about a yard more than ANYONE in the history of the league.

    The argument could be made that he was the best football player ever.

    He went out on top while he was still the best. When he was playing racism was still a part of the game, but NOONE messed with him.

    He is 76, he’s been there and done that and he has earned the right to say whatever he damn well pleases.

    If you disagree with him, fine – but if you don’t give him the respect he has earned MANY times over you say more about yourself than him.

  41. mlmike25 says:Apr 26, 2012 3:00 PM

    Man, you wife beater commenters kill me.

    Maybe his wife didn’t listen? Ever thought of that???
    Oh…. that’s different. Smacking a woman around for not listening to you is an entirely different story.


    That said, while Brown does come across as a bitter old man, too many of you under-50 kids have no idea what an absolute BEAST dude was on the field in his day.

    Barry and Walter ran AROUND you. JB ran THROUGH you.

    Know before you talk, youngsters.

  42. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but I have to question why he felt it was appropriate to call a 20-21 year old kid that probably respects/admires who Jim Brown was as a player, an ordinary player. Trent Richardson didn’t start over Mark Ingram because Ingram was an upper classman who by the way won the heisman trophy. Richardson did however split carries with a heisman trophy winning running back in just his sophmore season. Then followed that up with his own heisman trophy worthy season. That says a lot about Richardson’s talent.

  43. as much as i respect jim brown,he’s just an old bitter man that made it in the NFL before they were paid mega-salaries,and that has made him a bitter ole man!

  44. I guess he failed to see MJD last year. Come on the QB stank up the field and MoJo was the only threat and still won the rushing title. That is impressive considering how pathetic the passing offense was.

  45. It’s not the first over-achiever he’s dumped on including Tiger in his prime.

    Since everything’s relative, I guess being a grumpy old man living in the past is alright so long as it no longer includes battering and harassing wives and throwing other women off apartment balconies.

  46. For all you who think you’re a better at evaluating RB talent than old man Jim Brown, you’re dreaming. Trent is fast, powerful, but most importantly he is stiff. Not much wiggle in his game. He won’t be trucking any NFL defenders.I guess most of you will have to wait until Sundays to see it.

  47. The ’73 Dolphins think Jim Brown is a bitter old man, living in the past.

  48. Brown is correct. Watch richardsons film and you see a guy running through lots of gaping holes. He was a tough runner in college but you can’t make a living being a battering ram in the nfl.

    I question his ability to make nfl players miss. He’s not very shifty. He reminds me of Eddie George. He’ll be a good player, but a game breaker? I don’t know about that.

    You don’t draft a workhorse in the top 5. You could have picked up a guy like mike Tolbert or just kept Hillis for that.

  49. I think TR is going to be a good RB but I do think he is overrated. His numbers are right in line with Ingram’s heisman year. Both had solid O-Lines. I think both will be good RBs just not great RBs

  50. @jagsfanugh
    I totally agree that MJD is far and away the best RB in the NFL right now. That team was horrible last season and I don’t think any other back in the NFL could have done what MJD did.

  51. Well Jim, it was Jerome Harrison that broke your single game rushing record. Uh, wasn’t he the guy with the brain tumor?

  52. I’m not going to comment on JB analysis. Its not important whether he’s right or wrong.

    The point I want to make is, JB wouldn’t last 5 minutes in this league. A consequence of this passing league now is the size, speed and athleticism of defensive lineman. Today, JB would be, um, ordinary.

  53. You have to give the man his due. He was right about Mark Ingram. He was on my fantasy team last season. It was painful.

  54. Naw … This is ridiculous… You have a man who can bench 475lbs (at 21 yrs old)and keep at 4.3-4.4 speed…. Ummm human wrecking ball anyone? And whoever that was who said he had gapping whole to run through… Tell that to any SEC defense. Oh and I don’t have to watch tape… I’m a gator fan, but have watched every game Richardson played at Bama… He’s smash mouth and finesse all wrapped up into one package…the nation will soon find out.

  55. For the most part, I think the NFL has reached the point where virtually NO RB is worthy of a 1st round pick.
    Sure, Adrian Peterson is a beast, but tends to get injured alot, perhaps in part due to his physical style of running. Ditto Darren McFadden.
    More importantly, it doesn’t seem to be a whole lot different for smaller, more elusive scat back style RBs. I think most would consider Jamaal Charles a top 10 or 15 RB. I don’t think he’s ever ran anybody over, his background as a track star at University of Texas has served him well as he’s ran around &/or away from the fastest DBs in the game. He visibly shies away from excessive/unnecessary contact (wisely), but still has missed as many games as Peterson due to knee & shoulder problems.
    No coach or GM wants to have too much invested in 1 guy (besides QB) to leave his team high & dry in the event of an injury, suspension, or holdout.
    RB by committee is the wave of the future, like it or not.

  56. @randomcommentor…. Ummm Richardson is 5’11” 224lbs and fresh out of college. Eddie George was 6’3″ 235lbs at his peak…. No comparison what so ever! And look up last years ole miss/bama game and see if you still think he is not “shifty”. He will be a pocket Jane Harrison…. Only a RB…. And possibly stronger since the University wouldn’t allow him to bench past 475lbs…. Just sayin

  57. I watched the man carry two three hackneys at a time 10-20 yards time and again. 1800 yards in a 9 game season before they were blocking for black running backs. He’s right, Richardson is ordinary compared to him. He MADE football. What a player. A thousand stories. “Give me the ball coach, and get the blockers outa my way. The guy was like a freight train. Much LOVE JB. WE LOVE YOU AND MISS YOU. GOD BLESS YOU AND THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES. You ate to football what Ali is to boxing, Babe Ruth to baseball. You’ll never be forgotten.

  58. How come Jim Brown knows more than anybody in the Brown’s front office? He’s entitled to his professional opinion about Richardson, but his observation about modern football being a game about passing is beyond debate. It’s unlikely Richardson will add many wins to the column for Cleveland, no matter how talented he is, and picking him so early in the draft (trading up to pick him so early in the draft!) is a mistake.

  59. Jim Brown was truly great. He was like a man playing with boys, leading the league in rushing virtually every season he played. It always took more than one tackler to bring him down. He retired too soon, after only about 9 years, and the yardage he gained during those 9 years was only surpassed many years later.

    Despite how great he was, he’s always been a self-congratulatory snot, lacking any class or grace off the field whatsoever. He always seems to be pissed off for no reason.

  60. TX raiderfan, To answer your question Leroy Kelly was his back up and over , 1,000 ids nearly every season till his last couple years. Kelly was good, but was no Jim Brown for sure. After Kelly left scat back Gregg Pruitt came in and because of him the NFL banned Tear away jerseys, he wasnt big, but could get through a hole made for a mouse and GONE. That was pretty much the end of the GLORY days for the browns after that. By then they had joined the AFC/NFC into one league and Modell ruined the Browns after he fired coach Paul Brown who later coached Cincinnati Bengals and the Brown family now pretty much owns. By the way, the Cleveland Browns were the Rams and then named after Coach PAUL BROWN. Spent many a COLD day in that lake front stadium with 30-40 mph winds off the lake. Loved every one of them. Modell really screwed Cleveland but they sued him (Cleveland) for the rights to the name and the ne Browns just haven’t gotten it together yet. Been nearly 35 years since I’ve been in Cleveland but still keep half an eye on them. Guess I always will thanks for letting me share the memories

  61. If Jim Brown was ‘the greatest’ then how come Leroy Kelly came in after he left and led the league in rushing?
    I think Leroy Kelly may think Jim Brown was ‘ordinary’ if he can do the same thing Jim Brown did.

    Browns O-Line must have been a huge part of J.B.’s success….

  62. A perfect example of “post-field concussion syndrome…” – the only thing JB has ever been impressed with is himself…humility isn’t in his repetoire. Personally, I have always thought Gale Sayers was the best back…EVER!

  63. I’m a lifelong Bama fan and a diehard Steeler fan. Although I wish the best for them all, it hurts to see three top Tide players (Dre Kirkpatrick, Courtney Upshaw, and Trent) go to our AFCN rivals. But only one of those picks really worries me in terms of what Pittsburgh will face on the field: Richardson. He really is an extraordinary, powerful back, and he’ll play his heart out.

  64. dino2997 says:
    Apr 26, 2012 2:46 PM
    Jim Brown is just a grouchy old man these days…


    He has reason to be. Seeing the game he loved turned into a gossiping, two-hand touch, flag laden, arm bar tackling specialists driven league. Seeing the decline of the mental state of athletes who make four times what he made, yet end up broke or homeless at the end of their career.

    He is an American original. He and Muhammed Ali were the last of the great champions of sport, justice and human dignity. We shall never see their likes again, and it was a grand time when Gods once walked the earth.

  65. 1historian says:
    Apr 26, 2012 3:48 PM
    Jim Brown was without doubt the biggest baddest and best running back ever – 9 seasons, 8 of them he went over 1,000 yards, and that was in a 12 game season.

    He averaged 5.2 yards for his career – about a yard more than ANYONE in the history of the league.

    The argument could be made that he was the best football player ever.

    He went out on top while he was still the best. When he was playing racism was still a part of the game, but NOONE messed with him.

    He is 76, he’s been there and done that and he has earned the right to say whatever he damn well pleases.

    If you disagree with him, fine – but if you don’t give him the respect he has earned MANY times over you say more about yourself than him.


    AMEN. And he retired to become a movie star, and was the definition of man. A lot of cowards, mentally weak, passionless people, and if they do speak their minds politically, they are told to shut up and play football.

    The league was a better one for having guys like him and the old school that wanted economic equality and justice for all. The comments here indicate an ignorance that is obscene, sad, but understandable.

  66. …well, when the argument can’t be upheld legitimately, someone throws the race card – pathetic. Mr. Brown recived his accolades…he’s been revered for his accomplishments for decades. But he’s also become well known for his embittered and occasionally belligerant caustic commentary…still being accorded more grace then most people would have received in similar circumstances. Humility is rewarded with respect and admiration…and is not, at present, a reward Mr. Brown chooses to cloth himself in. Give me Sayers….

  67. Jim, I loved you on Devil’s Island. But c’mon, ya gotta say Richardson is a bit better than “ordinary”, no? What was Raquel like?

  68. Richardson won’t last long his legs are too bowed and that puts an extraordinary amount of pressure on his knees. He’ll be done in 3yrs.

  69. Everyone at the time said that it was sour grapes, the same thing they said about Bernie Kosar when he recently spoke out against the losing culture who called it, “a complete recipe for disaster.” Maybe these legends know what they are talking about. The Factory of Sadness continues. Jim Brown has the last laugh.

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