23. RB Trent Richardson, 2012 – 3rd Overall
Remember that Epic Rap Battles of History between Mit Romney and Barak Obama, where the dude rapping as Abraham Lincoln goes, “You, I wanna like you!”. That’s how I feel about Trent Richardson. The dude was Mike Alstott with dreds. He was warm, and fun, he loved football. He was everything you wanted in a running back.
Save for the exception of, you know, not being able to play running back in the NFL. Richardson wasn’t easy to down, not even close. He had a nose for the endzone and he busted his ass both on and off the field. The only problem is that he was unable to find the openings in an offensive line.
He had a really solid rookie year, with 950 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns, but he had just 3.6 yards per carry. Considering what we’re seeing from guys like Nick Chubb, it really puts things in perspective. His offensive line wasn’t nearly as good as Chubb’s, sure, but you can’t just blame a good, but not great, line on those YPC figures.
Richardson isn’t done as a player despite flaming out in the NFL. He played in the CFL and played really well (5.4 YPC) but after just four games he moved on. He then went to the AAF and scored 11 touchdowns but that was the best part of his run in the defunct fed.
He’s in Mexico now, trying to get the Mexican American Professional Football League a higher profile.