We all remember Trent Richardson in his Alabama jersey looking like Herschel Walker reincarnated, but don’t we remember Mark Ingram and Eddie Lacy appearing that way too? Could it be that these admittedly talented Tide backs are the product of the exceedingly talented lines they’ve run behind? (I mean at the moment TJ Yeldon has looked pretty dominant too). Sure they were impressive in college, but for where they were drafted and the hype surrounding them backs like Richardson and Ingram are starting to show that many talented runners can look good when their college O-lines create gaps that the Marco’s Grilled Cheese Cart could fit through. The majority of fans love a sexy draft pick, which is exactly what Richardson was coming out of Alabama. But just a year later the reasoning behind that selection is most definitely in question.
Actual Browns Draft Picks 2012 (3rd and 22nd picks):
3rd Overall Trent Richardson (3.5 yards per carry during NFL career), Brandon Weeden (Age: 29 …yes a 28 year old rookie QB on draft day, don’t get me started)
My proposed ‘I know hindsight is 20/20 but come on seriously this could’ve been done at the time without what we know now’ Picks:
3rd Overall Ryan Tannehill (really making the jump to respectable this season with a 66% completion rate through 3 games …oh and his team is 3-0), and at 22 opposed to Weeden they could’ve gotten a franchise back at a much lower cost with about the same amount of upside in Doug Martin (4.5 yards per carry, a full yard ahead of Richardson)
Okay I suppose that’s enough Browns Bashing, so here’s what they’ve done right in the past week and a half:
1) realized that they took a back wayyyyy to early in a pass happy league where you can win the Superbowl with backs like Willie Parker and Joseph Addai.
2) rectified said mistake by stealing a first rounder from the colts that they can use to finally draft a franchise QB …hopefully one that’s not on the verge of receiving social security checks.
3) starting Brian Hoyer (A former Brady Backup and Big Ten Boy, both things I love)
If you’re a Browns fan don’t mourn Richardson, be excited that you now have a front office who appears to know exactly what they are doing. Yes, you’ll have to get through this season but being able to snag a Bridgewater or Mariota will be worth it. Clevelanders– this wont be your year but something tells me you could be in for an unprecedented turnaround in 2014 with 7 picks in the first 4 rounds of next years draft (Also I’m thinking you get LeBron …but that’s another column). The future is bright in Cleveland and dealing Richardson is definitely the impetus behind that.