The fallout from the decision to bench Trent Richardson continues.
Earlier this week, the Colts responded to an NFL.com report that offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton was feeling the heat from within the Colts organization. On Tuesday, Colts receiver Reggie Wayne - who is on injured reserve recovering from a knee injury - spoke about Richardson on his weekly radio show, hosted by Jake Query and Derek Schultz of Indianapolis radio station 1260 AM WNDE.
When asked if Richardson had come to Wayne seeking advice on how to deal with the benching, Wayne responded [emphasis mine]:
"He came to me, he wasn't pouting or anything. This was the next day after he found out he was demoted and he said, "Now I can sit back and actually watch the way it's supposed to be done." He kind of feels that he was maybe forced into it early without actually learning it."
There's some truth to this.
Richardson was traded to the Colts by the Browns in exchange for a first round pick in 2014. That trade happened on Wednesday, September 18th. The Colts introduced Richardson that Thursday, and then Saturday the team was flying to San Francisco to take on the 49ers. Richardson had to learn the playbook with Andrew Luck sitting next to him on the 6-plus hour flight to SF. Then, on Sunday, September 22nd, Richardson played.
That's a pretty crazy turnaround.
Still, as Wayne later said in his discussion with Query and Schultz regarding Richardson, this is the "nature of the beast." Crazy, unpredictable change is part of life in the NFL. You should know that going in. No one is going to have sympathy for a player, especially a running back, who cannot adapt and adjust quickly to change.
As CBS Sports' Pete Prisco noted on Twitter Tuesday, Richardson is still struggling to identify and hit OBVIOUS rushing alleys.
Trent took the yellow path pic.twitter.com/Mhga6uHXBs— Pete Prisco (@PriscoCBS) December 3, 2013
Prisco then followed up with this:
To be fair to Trent Richardson, I don't think a combo of Jim Brown and OJ Simpson could get yards behind Satele and those guards— Pete Prisco (@PriscoCBS) December 3, 2013
Part of it is a bad o-line. Part of it is a lack of familiarity with the offensive scheme. Part of it is Richardson just playing poorly.
Wayne's advice to T-Rich on how to deal with the demotion?
"Do better. Practice harder. Study longer."
The audio from WNDE's talk with Reggie Wayne regarding Trent Richardson is below. Great stuff by Jake and Derek.