There are three things we know for sure about Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson:
1. He is supremely talented.
2. He will be the focal point of the Browns offense.
3. He seems to be injury prone.
In the past sixteen months, Richardson has undergone two knees surgeries and played a portion of the 2012 season with broken ribs. Then he suffered a strained shin muscle during the beginning of OTA’s. If all that wasn’t enough, Richardson has also lost ten pounds because of medication for migraines and not being able to fully participate in weight training.
Taking everything into consideration, it looks like the running back will be out of action until August.
Richardson once again was absent as the Browns began minicamp on Tuesday. The latest estimate is that he will be out until August, ESPNCleveland.com reports. A source very close to Richardson tells ESPNCleveland.com’s Will Burge that the team is being “ultra-cautious” due to concern that the injury could develop into a stress fracture. The source even invoked the name of Louisville basketball player Kevin Ware, who suffered a gruesome compound fracture on a routine play, as the worst-case scenario.
Trent Richardson could be a top five back in the NFL if he could find a way to stay healthy. The Browns believe in him, but it is difficult to gauge just how high is ceiling is because we haven’t seen him 100% yet. Being cautious with Richardson and giving him a couple months to get healthy for training camp is a good move by the Browns. Hopefully come September we can see exactly what Richardson is really capable of.