Daryl Richardson blazed through his Abilene Christian Pro Day, turning in a 4.46 40 and 40.5 inch vertical. It’s what helped get him drafted by the St. Louis Rams in 2012.
But now, Richardson will have to display that upper echelon athleticism in Latrobe if he wants to crack the Pittsburgh Steelers’ roster.
Chris Adamski caught up with him and has a great feature on The Trib’s site.
“All I can do is play fast, play like I can play,” Richardson tells Adamski in the article.
The best laid plans of mice and men go awry and that much is especially true in the NFL’s fickle word. Richardson was supposed to sign with the Steelers late in the regular season but injuries elsewhere put that plan on hold. Instead, he latched on with the Cleveland Browns where he spent bouncing on and off the inactive list, failing to receive a carry when he received a helmet.
Want to take a guess if Richardson was interested in returning to the Browns, coming off a 3-13 season and another coaching change?
“And I didn’t want to sign back with Cleveland, and (the Steelers) were men of their word and they brought me back.”
He’s been able to stick around for the offseason which might sound like a given until you realize the team has reshuffled the deck at the position. Cameron Stingily and Brandon Brown-Dukes were added during rookie minicamp, swapping out for Christian Powell and Abou Toure. Richardson will come into camp with an uphill climb. But still, a chance. And that’s all any player can ask for.
On his side is experience. He’s played on Sundays, 167 carries to his name. The first trip to the end zone, however, still alludes him. That kind of thinking may be ahead of itself, he needs to make the team first after all, but there’s certainly an interesting skillset to be offered.
Richardson’s main competition will be trying to unseat Fitzgerald Toussaint for the team’s #3 RB gig. Of course, he also realizes the game’s third phase is how he, like so many others in his position, will have to cut his teeth.
“But right now my key thing is probably special teams right now.”
Pittsburgh tends to use their running backs covering kicks and serving as an “up man” on kick returns. Combined, Jordan Todman and Toussaint played 135 regular season special teams snaps in 2015.