Oh boy. Here we go again. In the aftermath of the Colts big win over the Texans, Indy Beat writer Ken Sterling took it upon himself to call out Anthony Richardson, going as far as to say he needs to "grow up" after yesterday’s game where the young dynamo met the business end of a brutal hit. But let’s cut through the noise and look at the play frame by frame, the way a real leader should. Richardson had already dazzled us all, proving he’s more than capable with two touchdowns and some impressive yardage under his belt. The kid wasn’t just playing; he was owning the field in coach Steichen's 'Philly special' offense.
But here comes the brutal truth, one that Sterling seems to have missed with eyes wide shut: Richardson was already across the end zone line, in the clear, when Texans defender M.J. Stewart unleashed a hit that many are calling foul on, noting it had all the signs of a helmet-to-helmet violation. The call for Richardson to "grow up" is not just misplaced; it’s a disservice to the sport we all love. It’s not about one young player’s perceived recklessness; it’s about a culture that sometimes allows dangerous plays to pass without the necessary scrutiny and accountability. We’ve got to ask, where’s the flag for that play? Where’s the call for Stewart to hold back the aggressive play when it was clearly unnecessary?
Richardson’s early-game performance was nothing short of remarkable, demonstrating both agility and a mature understanding of the game’s dynamics. He stepped onto that field with a level of preparedness and determination that contradicts Sterling’s analysis entirely. Instead of calling for the refs to do their job, "we" are blaming Richardson for not "protecting himself" in a situation which by the book, should have resulted in a flag on Stewart for violating helmet to helmet contact rules. Rather than being an issue of Richardson's 'maturity' or understanding of the game, the incident serves as a reflection of the perils that come with a contact sport and, perhaps, a player acting outside the bounds of necessary force.