I Was Wrong About...Trent Richardson
When talking about football players, sometimes I sound like a broken record. Whenever someone washes out of the NFL, I beat the drum that there are other places to play if a player truly has a passion for the sport of football. Back in June, for example, I declared that Colin Kaepernick Does Not Love Football.
6 months later I still stand by that statement. As Kaepernick is suing the league for collusion, what really happened to Kaepernick is not organized collusion. Kaepernick thought he should be paid like one of the Top 10-20 quarterbacks in the league and his representation let the GMs across the league know his price tag. GMs across the league let Kaeperick's representation know that they were interested in him as a quarterback in the 40th to 50th best quarterback price range. Kaeperick didn't want to take a pay cut for a game he didn't love and GMs did not want to be known as the guy who overpaid for an average quarterback (who liked to kneel).
Everyone can talk about the politics of Kaepernick, and yes I'm sure some owners were chased away by his stance, but guess what? In business, management often screws with the workers' worth. That fact is not exclusive to football. For a league obsessed with analytics, Kaepernick overplayed his hand.
Int%- 6th (Good)
Sacked- 10th (Bad)
Net Yards Per Attempt- 29th
Trent Richardson was drafted by the Cleveland Browns with the 3rd pick of the 2012 draft. The Browns were so enamored with Richardson that they traded up a spot for the honor of picking him. The Browns loved Richardson for the potential he had shown helping Alabama win 2 National Championships. I remember a surly sportswriter from Cleveland complaining that the Browns had overdrafted Richardson, the writer questioned Richardson's skills, claiming that he could have run through the holes that the Alabama Offensive Line had opened for him.
I, on the other hand, kind of liked Trent. I thought he had potential. He had a nice rookie season and I was stunned when he was traded to the Indianapolis Colts during the 2013 season. In hindsight, it was one of the few good trades the Browns made over the past decade.
Shortly after arriving in Indianapolis, rumors and innuendos started about his nocturnal activities as Richardson's name was splattered all over the tabloids. After putting up pedestrian numbers in the 2014 season, and seemingly forgetting how to hit the hole, Richardson washed out of the league.
There were a few training camp invitations over the next couple of years, but mostly off the field issues, some his fault, some not. Young Trent Richardson did not garner another regular season carry again until this past September....in Saskatchewan.
On Monday, the Bleacher Report had a nice article about Richardson's playing comeback, including one of the coolest quotes I've heard in a long time: "It didn't matter where I was, I was just trying to get better," Richardson said. "I want to play ball. I'm playing ball for myself and I'm happy playing it. I'm not ready to be done with it yet. I know I still got a lot of talent in me. I'm going to keep on trucking."
And he put his money where his mouth is. He went all the way to Regina, Saskatchewan to keep playing football. All the more remarkable seeing that he grew up in Florida and went to college in Alabama. At 27, I hope Richardson has a renewed sense of focus and has a few more years of ball left in him, no matter where he plays.
Colin Kaepernick was back in the news this week. This time he wants to buy the Carolina Panthers. No, that's not a misprint. He wants to OWN the Panthers, not play for the Panthers.
You know who else wants to own the Panthers? Me.
Sign me up. I'll put down $50,000. What do you mean the sale price is $1.5 BILLION? I'd still like to buy 'em. Colin Kaepernick signed a $100 million contract in 2014 and has made a total in career earnings of...$43.3 million. At age 30, Kaepernick's career earnings are less than that of a middle of the road NBA'er. Nobody talks about what a dumb move it was for Kaepernick to OPT OUT of his own record-setting contract.
[Joe Ingles is in the middle of a guaranteed 4 year, $50 million contract with the Utah Jazz. Not familiar with Ingles? Yeah that's my point. To show you the absurdity of Kaepernick wanting to own the Panthers, consider that Steph Curry made $34.6 million JUST THIS YEAR in the middle of his $200 million contract. Kaepernick saying he wants to own a team is yet another pub grab.]
Meanwhile, back to reality. Kaepernick has the same shot of owning the Panthers as I do. Don't get me wrong, Diddy wanting to own the Panthers, he probably has money in the bank for that. C.K.? If you made a list of the top athletes in America with liquid assets, I would argue Kaepernick's not even in the top 200. Hell, as a Browns fan, Joe Thomas has a more legit chance to own the Panthers.
I know Trent Richardson ain't a saint, but it's refreshing to read about a football player who loves to play football.
The Roughriders's 2018 schedule is already out and the first preseason game starts in May. Hopefully Richardson's injury is healed up enough for him to play.