INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Trent Richardson wanted more work in Cleveland. He's about to get his wish in Indianapolis.
Less than two weeks after being traded from the Browns, the 2012 first-round draft pick will be given more carries and a bigger role Sunday after starter Ahmad Bradshaw was ruled out with a neck injury.
Richardson, who has been studying his playbook relentlessly, said he's ready.
"I've been learning the game plan every day and sticking my face in that playbook two hours after practice, an hour before practice, at the meetings and stuff," Richardson said. "I've been studying hard so I feel like that work load, I'm ready to go for it."
The Colts (2-1) don't have much choice.
Their original starter, Vick Ballard, went down with a season-ending knee injury before Indy's second game. Bradshaw started in a loss to Miami and again last week against San Francisco, four days after the Colts sent a 2014 first-round pick to Cleveland for Richardson.
Bradshaw responded with his best game since joining the Colts in June, rushing 19 times for 95 yards and a late touchdown. But he took a big shot early in the game. Initially, he tried to get up before falling to his knees.
Coach Chuck Pagano wouldn't say whether that was the play on which Bradshaw was injured.
So when the Colts practiced Friday, the only healthy running backs on the active roster were Richardson, Donald Brown, another former first-rounder, and fullback Stanley Havili. Indy could activate rookie Kerwynn Williams, a seventh-round draft pick, from the practice squad.
Pagano wouldn't say if the Colts would do that or how the carries would be split up, only that Richardson has to be ready for more work at winless Jacksonville (0-3).
"He's got no choice," Pagano said when asked if Richardson had enough time to learn the offense. "David Walker is a great football coach and a great teacher. He did an unbelievable job getting Trent ready for last Sunday and he'll do the same for this week. Between him and Donnie and the rest of the crew, we'll go down there and hopefully get the job done."