Trent Richardson: What to Expect from RB in Week 7

Jessica Marie@ItsMsJisnerCorrespondent IIOctober 16, 2012

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 14: Running back Trent Richardson #33 of the Cleveland Browns runs for a gain against the Cincinnati Bengals during the second quarter at Cleveland Browns Stadium on October 14, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

With the Indianapolis Colts coming up, Trent Richardson picked just about the worst time to go down with an injury.

The Cleveland Browns running back and rookie sensation took a bad hit to the ribs in the first quarter of Cleveland's 34-24 win over the Bengals on Sunday, which limited him to a mere 37 yards.

Looking ahead to Week 7, the Browns have an excellent opportunity to extend their winning streak to two when they travel to Indianapolis—and Richardson has an excellent opportunity to put up huge numbers for his fantasy owners, given the Colts' struggles against the run.

But first, it would be helpful to know if Richardson is actually going to see the field this weekend.

According to Tom Reed of The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Richardson's status for Sunday is still uncertain. He was scheduled for an MRI on Monday, Reed reports, and Browns head coach Pat Shurmur says the running back is currently day to day.

While it's bad news that Richardson spent most of the second half of Sunday's win watching from the sideline, it's good news that his status is day to day. It's also good news that Montario Hardesty had such a strong outing in Richardson's absence, rushing for 56 yards and a touchdown, because Shurmur and his staff know they can utilize both backs if Richardson isn't 100 percent.

It's hard to speculate on the nature of Richardson's injury with so little information, but there are a lot of positives. Nothing is broken; his status, though uncertain, is at least a little bit encouraging; and Richardson himself told that he expects to be good to go against the Colts.

And if Richardson does get in Sunday's game…fantasy owners, rejoice.

The Colts rank 29th in the NFL in rush defense, allowing 159.0 yards per game. In last week's brutal 35-9 loss to the Jets, they allowed 252 yards on the ground. Shonn Greene rushed for 161 yards and three scores, and Joe McKnight tacked on another 71 yards. According to, Indianapolis allows 25.6 points per week to running backs.

As such, there's a good chance that both Richardson and Hardesty could put up big numbers next week. They barely have to try.

Richardson has registered at least one touchdown in four of five games this season. He's finished with over 100 yards in three of those five. He's about to face one of the easiest rush defenses the league has to offer.

If he gets in the game on Sunday—which, even though it's early in the week, it seems as though he will—and if he gets 14 or more carries, which he probably will, Sunday will be a fun day for your fantasy team.

Projection: 16 carries, 85 rush yards, 30 receiving yards, 1 TD