The injury that sidelined Trent Richardson for the final game of his rookie year was bigger than previously indicated, as the running back said he had been playing with two or three broken ribs, according to Tony Grassi of ESPNCleveland.com.
It seemed as if Richardson being inactive for Week 17 was just a matter of resting the talented rookie, similar to why the Browns sat starting quarterback Brandon Weeden and Colt McCoy for the final game, although it was officially linked to an ankle injury that ended his Week 16 game against the Denver Broncos. Both of those still may have been true, but Richardson also admitted that he had been playing through at least two broken ribs for some time.
Richardson had a strong rookie year after being drafted third overall, finishing with 950 yards, meaning he could have hit 1,000 if he was able to go in the year's final game. But his numbers dropped off as the year went along, After recording 100 yards in back-to-back weeks against the San Diego Chargers and Baltimore Ravens and 95 yards the next week against the Dallas Cowboys, he wouldn't hit triple digits again, failing to eclipse 53 yards in any of his last three games.