Indy shipped its first-round draft pick to Cleveland with hopes that Richardson would give the offense a hammer-dropping back behind Andrew Luck. Plodding along to the tune of 2.8 yards per carry, Richardson on Monday defended his season.
"I'm not frustrated at all because I think I've been playing good," he said, per The Indianapolis Star. "If you turn on the film, I don't have any missed assignments. I haven't had any missed reads. I've been playing good. Stuff just hasn't matched up like we thought it would when I'm in there."
Richardson is no stranger to teams stacking the box. It happened relentlessly in Cleveland, as opponents learned to attack him in bunches. Richardson's not easy to bring down, but defenses aren't seeing the same explosive running style he displayed at Alabama. His game today is hampered by hesitancy at the line and a lack of vision in the backfield.
The Colts appeared to lose confidence in him in Thursday night's 30-27 victory over the Tennessee Titans. After angling to involve Richardson in the pass game -- trying to free him into open space -- he was largely ignored as a runner, carrying the ball only once in the first half and six times all night.
Luck has barreled for 231 yards on the year at 5.6 yards per clip. Brown's averaging 5.9 yards per carry. Before he was hurt, Ahmad Bradshaw went for 4.5 yards per attempt.
Richardson's explanation: "I think teams match up differently when I come in."
Welcome to the life of a featured back. Ask Adrian Peterson about extra attention. The question is whether Richardson can make plays no matter what the defense shows -- that's what Indy traded for.