Trent Richardson is a dominating college running back. The man put up 100 or more yards in nine games this past season, and an additional 96 in the BCS National Championship against LSU. He averaged 129 yards per game on the season. On two occasions (against North Texas and Ole Miss) Richardson averaged over 10 yards per carry with a season average of 5.9 YPC. A long of 79 yards and 21 total rushing touchdowns isn’t bad either.
If a running back that runs isn’t your thing, Richardson is also a threat out of the backfield. In 2011 he accumulated 338 yards with an average of 11.7 yards per catch. To top it off, he is able to turn the pass into a long gain. In 2011 his longest reception was 61 yards. In 2010 he pulled off an impressive 85 yard catch.
Yet despite all of the glorious statistics, Richardson is not often pegged as being selected at seven overall by the Jaguars. Is it all because of Maurice Jones-Drew’s entrenched presence as the starting running back? Or is it because Rashad Jennings is truly that respected across the league as a very good number two?
By many mock drafts, Richardson is either gone or passed up. If another team takes Richardson, then the Jags won’t have to worry about passing on a hard working, nose to the grindstone talent. However, if Richardson is on the board, there are many reasons to take him over someone like Quinton Coples.
Richardson is a brilliant running back with a good eye for holes and the patience and speed to play effectively at the pro level. His addition to the Jags, even with the high pay and already having Maurice Jones-Drew, will provide a knockout 1-2 punch for the Jaguars. It will keep Maurice Jones-Drew fresh, as many pundits think the Jags have already run him into the ground, and it will allow for the Jaguars to focus less on maintaining an effective running game and instead on (much needed) scheme balance.
Do I think that Richardson will be the pick for the Jags at seven? Not necessarily. But he’s certainly worthy of heavy consideration.
- Luke N. Sims