Meadville Tribune

Sports

September 18, 2013

NFL: Colts acquire Richardson from Browns for draft pick

BEREA, Ohio — Not long ago, Trent Richardson was viewed as a cornerstone for Cleveland’s future.

On Wednesday, he became part of its recent inglorious past.

The Browns traded the powerful running back to Indianapolis in a stunning move just two games into the season and one year after drafting Richardson in the first round.

The team’s new front office dealt Richardson for a first-round draft pick next year, when the team will have two opening-round selections and 10 overall. Cleveland is rebuilding again and the team hopes to use those picks — seven in the first four rounds — to help turn around a floundering franchise.

Such a reversal was what the Browns had in mind when they took Richardson with the No. 3 overall pick in 2012. The former Alabama standout seemed to have it all: power, speed and good hands.

But Richardson wasn’t the kind of back Cleveland’s front office wants or apparently suited first-year coach Rob Chudzinski’s offense. Richardson, who rushed for 950 yards as a rookie despite playing most of last season with two broken ribs, gained just 105 yards on 31 carries in Cleveland’s two losses this season.

He lacked the explosiveness the Browns’ new regime was looking for, and it may not have helped that Richardson made it clear he wanted the ball more.

However, Browns CEO Joe Banner said there was nothing negative about Richardson and the team simply seized an opportunity to improve. And the Colts have been looking for a back since Vick Ballard suffered a season-ending knee injury.

“This was more about the moment presented itself,” Banner said, “and based on the situation the Colts found themselves in, it wasn’t something where we could say, ‘Can you wait three weeks to think about this or learn more?’ We thought it was a move to make us better and we had to make that decision now. We decided to move forward.”

Banner said the Browns’ first conversation with Indianapolis about a deal for Richardson was Tuesday.

The shocking trade — easily the biggest in Cleveland’s expansion era and one of the most significant since the Browns joined the NFL in 1950 — came on the same day Chudzinski announced third-string quarterback Brian Hoyer will start Sunday against Minnesota. Hoyer got the surprising nod over backup Jason Campbell to fill in for starter Brandon Weeden, who is sidelined with a sprained right thumb.

The double whammy floored many Browns fans, leaving some to wonder if the team was giving up on this season.

Banner denied that and said he understands the fans’ suspicions.

“We have to earn their belief and trust in the decisions we’re going to make as a group,” he said. “I don’t expect them to trust that until we prove that the trust is well placed. So, I understand the skepticism for now. We have to do what we think is right, move the franchise forward and get it to where we want it to be.”

Chudzinski isn’t worried about any negative backlash from his players, who had left the facility when the trade was announced.

“That’s football,” said Chudzinski, adding he reached out to the team’s captains. “You deal with those things whether they are injuries or a trade. I believe in this group and I believe the next guy will step up and we will find a way and do what we need to do to win.”

Like Richardson, Weeden’s days could be numbered with the Browns, who have started 19 quarterbacks since 1999 and are still looking for the right one. Next year’s draft class includes several top-flight QBs and the Browns could be loading up on high picks to make sure they get a good one.

Banner, though, said the Browns aren’t angling toward any particular position or player.

“I don’t want to tip our hands on what we’re going to do or prioritize in doing, but I think it puts us in a very good position to have made some real progress with the team in this offseason to be in very good cap shape going into next season,” he said.

The Browns are brutally thin at running back after trading Richardson and losing Dion Lewis and Montario Hardesty to season-ending injuries. Chris Ogbonnaya and Bobby Rainey are the only backs on the roster.

The team is bringing in free-agent running back Willis McGahee for a physical and will sign him if he passes the examination. A two-time Pro Bowler, McGahee rushed for 731 yards in 10 games for the Broncos last season and has gained 8,097 in his nine-year career.

Richardson has been slowed by injuries since he was taken after Luck and Robert Griffin III last year.

His college coach, Nick Saban, wished him well with the Colts.

“Hopefully this is going to be a great situation and circumstance for him, so that he can have more success, and be a good player for a long time,” Saban said. “The guy was a fantastic player here. We never had anybody who contributed more to the team in terms of how he played and how he affected other people.”

Before the deal, Richardson spoke to Minnesota reporters on a conference call about the expectations that come with being such a high draft pick.

“I think people make it more pressure than what it is,” he said. “I just like to play football. At the end of the day, I’m going to play football like I’ve always been coached. The way I’ve always played. I’m going to be physical, fast, I’m going to be up-tempo.”

And he’s going to do so in a new uniform.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • Sam Kinter Cardinals’ offense awakens in win over Panthers

    It was bound to happen.
    At some point this season, Cochranton was going to put together a complete performance and allow head coach Mark McGuire and his staff to breathe a little easier in the late innings.
    On Thursday afternoon the Cardinals, looking to finish the first half of the Region 3 season unbeaten, finally came through.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Eagles soar past ’Dogs

    Sometimes getting back on the field is just what the doctor ordered.
    Everyone remembers Michael Jordan’s 1997 “Flu Game”, and Kirk Gibson’s 1988 World Series heroics of hitting a walk-off home run while battling a stomach virus and two injured legs has been well documented.

    April 24, 2014

  • Bears 10-run Blue Devils

    Union City’s bats have awakened.
    Putting a smile on head coach Frank Cutshall’s face, the Bears finally got it going offensively Thursday afternoon as they rolled to an 11-1 victory over Cambridge Springs in Region 3 action.

    April 24, 2014

  • Blue Jackets celebrate Pens squander 3-0 lead as Jackets even up series

    Brandon Dubinsky scored with 22.5 seconds left in regulation to force overtime and Nick Foligno’s wrist shot just inside the blue line 2:49 into the extra session gave the Columbus Blue Jackets a 4-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night.
    The Blue Jackets overcame a 3-0 deficit for their first home playoff victory in the franchise’s 13 seasons, sending the series back to Pittsburgh for Game 5 on Saturday night tied 2-2.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Kyle Wise Panthers rally to beat Huskies

    Through three innings Tuesday afternoon at home, it looked like it was going to be a very long day for the Saegertown baseball team.
    The wind and the cold didn’t appear to bother Harbor Creek starting pitcher Issac Mattson as the senior struck out nine batters through the first three frames, including four strikeouts in the first inning alone.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Greggs and Bison knock Bulldogs down to earth

    Back to reality.
    Coming off one of its biggest wins in recent years on Friday with a 10-5 victory over previously unbeaten Saegertown, Meadville fell victim to possibly being over confident against Fort LeBoeuf.

    April 22, 2014

  • Devils sweep Tigers

    Just six days earlier, the Cambridge Springs boys volleyball coaching staff sat on the sidelines at Saegertown High School perplexed and disappointed as they watched the Blue Devils give away opportunity after opportunity.

    April 22, 2014

  • Abby Clulow Cardinals overcome offensive woes to remain unbeaten

    Abby Clulow is confident that sooner or later the bats are going to come alive for the Cochranton softball team. She is also pretty confident that until then the Lady Cardinals will continue to find a way to get the job done.
    After all, how could she feel any differently?

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fight.jpg Brewers win in 14th after early brawl with Pirates

    Ryan Braun homered in the ninth inning to tie it, then Khris Davis hit a home run in the 14th that put Milwaukee ahead for good.
    Yet those were hardly the big blows that attracted all the attention Sunday in the Brewers’ 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pivotal Game 3 awaits Pens and Blue Jackets

    Not so long ago, the Columbus Blue Jackets were the worst team in the NHL.
    Now they’re heading home for tonight’s Game 3 of their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series with the star-studded Pittsburgh Penguins hoping to make even more history.

    April 20, 2014

Sports Scoreboard
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Business Marquee
AP Video
Raw: Obama Tours Gyeongbok Palace Swimmer Michael Phelps Back in Competition Raw: Obama Lays Korean War Memorial Wreath Obama Leads Naturalization Ceremony in Seoul Calif. School Bus Crash Hurts Driver, 11 Kids Country Club for Exotic Cars Little Science Behind 'Pollen Vortex' Prediction US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents
Poll

In terms of the overall livability and workability of the City of Meadville, which component of the city’s infrastructure should receive top priority?

Streets
Stormwater control
Parks
Other
It’s too difficult to single one out
     View Results
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks