Essentially, if the 22-year-old Richardson doesn’t produce from the immediate outset, Chuck Pagano and Pep Hamilton will only hand the pigskin to Ahmad Bradshaw and Vick Ballard.
Richardson, who is roughly six months removed from shoulder surgery, struggled mightily after relocating to Indianapolis last September and needs to finally earn his $2.25 million salary.
Splitting time with Donald Brown, Richardson rushed 157 times for only 458 yards and three touchdowns in 14 games as a Colt.
Able to complete the 40-yard dash in 4.32 seconds, the 2011 All-American also disappointed by catching 28 measly pigskins for 265 yards.
Most worrisome, lacking any explosion, Richardson averaged a pathetic 2.9 yards per carry.
Despite Richardson’s ineptitude, the Colts (11-5) finished atop the AFC South and fielded the league’s 14th ranked attack.
Granted, Indianapolis didn’t exactly employ a line reminiscent of Washington’s “Hogs” of the 1980s.
Nevertheless, with many analysts predicting Pagano and Hamilton had landed their own version of Peyton Manning and Edgerrin James, Richardson was a gimpy Colt.
Richardson, who took a leukemia survivor to her prom in April 2012, simply underachieved in the Crossroads of America.
However, shedding weight and again tipping the scales at 225 pounds, Richardson will rebound and potentially help the Colts gallop to Super Bowl XLIX at the University of Phoenix Stadium.
Still, regardless of how Trent Richardson uses his legs, Chuck Pagano and Pep Hamilton must finally “get going” with Andrew Luck’s arm this autumn.by