I begged you to stop printing out Trent Richardson injury stories and making long ropes, which is unnecessary, a waste of paper, and it seems like a lot of effort.
We get it, he’s turned various shades of black and blue throughout his first season and now his first full offseason as a professional running back, and any injury is always concerning. But Richardson’s injuries have primarily been breaks, and those happen in football, a game rooted in large bodies colliding at speeds which cause great harm.
Bones break, and although he plodded at times (3.6 YPC), please remember that Richardson still recorded 950 rushing yards during his rookie season. Add in his 12 total touchdowns and 367 receiving yards, and that’s 190 fantasy points, significantly more than Matt Forte (167) and Chris Johnson (162).
So what I’m saying is this: stop your worrying about a guy who can clearly be productive while playing hurt after he posted most of those numbers while fighting through broken ribs for 11 games, and he missed Week 17. But the real reason to stop worrying about Richardson’s injury is because soon you’ll have no reason to worry about anything because an injury won’t exist.
He was held out of the Browns’ minicamp due to concerns that his shin strain could develop into a stress fracture. With the required rest soon complete, he’s set to start running soon. And as the Cleveland Plain-Dealer’s Mary Kay Cabot notes, Richardson wouldn’t be running at any time if there wasn’t confidence in his health.
From all the conversations that I’ve had on the record and off, the club does expect Richardson to be ready for training camp July 25 and feel it’s nothing more than a muscle strain. Richardson is still on track to begin a running program in two weeks, and there’s no way he’d be doing that if they were worried about a stress fracture.
Richardson received a steady workload during his final year at Alabama, averaging 21.7 carries per game, and he turned that into 1,679 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns. Yeah, not bad.
He can sustain a heavy pounding, and he did that during a four-game stretch in 2012 between weeks eight and 12 when he averaged 26.5 carries per game. Oh and again, he did that with broken ribs, an injury which puts most humans in the fetal position for many hours.
With Josh Gordon suspended for two games, Richardson will be leaned on heavily in September, both conventionally and as a pass-catching option in the flats where he hauled in 51 receptions this past season. His injury threat is only moderately ahead of any other running back, and he’s now in a much more dynamic vertical offense under Rod Chudzinski and Norv Turner which should make defenses hesitant to put eight men in the box.
Draft him with confidence, because he’ll be fine. Believe.