Nick Saban’s dynasty at Alabama has produced some fantastic running backs, though it hasn’t always translated to NFL success. The poster boy for that transitional issue is probably Trent Richardson, drafted fourth overall by the Browns in 2012 before struggling mightily and washing out of the league. He hasn’t played an NFL game since the 2014 season.
(Paul Finebaum thinks differently, of course, but trust me, this is what actually happened.)
How is Trent spending his time these days? Well, presumably with a lot of things, but last week he served as Alabama’s scout team running back to help the Crimson Tide prepare for Leonard Fournette and the LSU Tigers.
John Parker Wilson wasn’t the only former Alabama standout to help the Tide prepare for LSU.
Like Wilson, former Alabama star running back Trent Richardson took part in practice last week as a member of the scout team.
While Wilson played the role of LSU quarterback Danny Etling, Richardson mimicked Tigers star running back Leonard Fournette, whom Alabama ended up limiting to 35 yards on 17 carries during its 10-0 win over LSU.
Richardson, a Heisman Trophy finalist in 2011 and a former top-five NFL draft pick, has been out of football since the Baltimore Ravens released him in early August.
As that report notes, it is indeed within NCAA rules to have a former player on the scout team, though knowing the NCAA, someone (Jim Harbaugh) will complain and it will become illegal within the month.
As for Richardson, if he keeps putting together quality scout team practices, maybe Ryan Grigson will get confused and draft him next year.