1.03 Browns – RB Trent Richardson, Alabama
Dubbed by several draft analysts as the best running prospect in the draft since Peterson, Richardson is one of the rare running backs worth a top 10 overall selection in April. While Richardson is a high-level prospect, he lands in a division where at least two of the Browns’ three rivals are annually in the top five against the run each season. With that said, it is hardly a fantasy exile as Cleveland has allowed a declining Jamal Lewis and a slightly above-average Peyton Hillis to be fantasy standouts when neither back possessed the ability Richardson does right now. Two of Richardson’s best traits as a runner are that he rarely ever goes down on first contact and possesses incredible vision – aspects that make the AP comparisons somewhat appropriate. While Richardson isn’t exactly an accomplished receiver, he is more than capable and should be able to post at least 30 receptions in his rookie season. As for the rushing attack in Cleveland, the Browns are one left guard away from having one of the better left sides in the NFL.
Considering the division in which he will be playing in and his current supporting cast, Richardson should fall just short of RB1 territory in redraft leagues this summer despite the fact he may be one of the 2-3 backs that may push 300+ carries. In 12-team leagues, he should go in the first half of Round 2.