Evans Clinchy
Thursday May 10th, 2012

The Cleveland Browns traded up from the No. 4 overall pick in last month's NFL draft to the No. 3 for a reason -- they really wanted Trent Richardson, and it wasn't to make him a backup. Browns GM Tom Heckert says that Richardson will be "the guy" in the backfield next season, according to ProFootballTalk.

"I think it’s pretty safe to say we draft a guy third overall, he’s going to be the guy," Heckert said. "But we do think we’re going to need extra backs. You know, last year going into the season we thought we’re in really good shape at running back with Peyton Hillis, Brandon Jackson, and Montario Hardesty and it turns out all three of them got nicked up. So, you know, we do think it’s a position where you better have a couple guys."

The Browns gave up three picks to move up in the draft and usurp the No. 3 from the Minnesota Vikings; they were eyeing Richardson, the featured back on the national champion Alabama Crimson Tide, all along. Richardson set single-season rushing records at Alabama last year with 1,679 yards and 21 touchdowns, winning the Doak Walker Award as the nation's top running back. The Browns can use the help -- their running back corps was crushed by injuries last season, as Hillis led the team with only 587 yards rushing. He missed six of the Browns' 16 games.

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