Not very often do professional sports teams trade away their best player. The Cleveland Browns’ fans (if there are any) have had it rough, only 1 winning season in the last 10 years. Trent Richardson was their knight is shining armor ready to save the day and restore their hopes and dreams….and now he is gone. The Browns front office has changed quite frequently in the last 5 years. There hasn’t been to much good news surrounding this team.
So why in the world would they trade away their best player? Trent Richardson has broke into the NFL last year as the 3rd overall pick in the 2012 draft. He had off-season arthroscopic surgery to remove some cartilage fragments in his left knee and missed his first preseason. He finished with a solid rookie season rushing for 950 yards on 267 carries and 11 TDs. Things started to look up for the Browns now that they have a player that looks like they can build a team around.
I was 276% sure the Browns were making a catastrophic mistake for their team. It seemed that they were robbed overnight and on the way out the thieves dropped a first round draft pick out of their back pocket, but didn’t feel it was worth going back in to get. Richardson was supposed to be the future if this team. He was supposed to put this team back on his feet, why did they get rid of him?
But not so fast. Trent Richardson may not be as good as everyone thinks. After looking through the numbers he only averaged 3.9 yards per carry last year and 3.4 so far this year, both with an offensive line that is not bad. He only played half of Cleveland’s plays last week. The Brown’s have only converted on 5 of 27, 3rd downs. Last year on 267 carries, he had only 14 carries of 10 or more yards and never showed any real explosiveness. Maybe it was all just an illusion because of how bad their quarterback is. But surly they could have gotten more for him than one first round draft pick.
This is where we may see a change in the NFL. In the NFL there is always a strive to win and be the best you can be. And yes that’s what makes fans happy, but there may be the change to a system like the NBA. Either be at the top or the bottom, no in-between. They want to truly rebuild and start from scratch, and moving players around and getting what they can get is a smart way to build for the future.
Maybe the Browns aren’t as crazy as everyone thinks, actually maybe getting rid of Richardson was the best move for them so they don’t get caught up in the Trent Richardson illusion.