The Indianapolis Colts have named fourth overall pick Anthony Richardson their starting quarterback to start the season, which may prove to be a grave mistake for the team. In the last 32 years, this team has tried this three other times when the team had the first overall pick and has had varying degrees of success.
The first time was in 1991 when they named Jeff George, nicknamed the man with the golden arm. Richardson proved to be anything but golden throughout his career in the NFL. The second time was with Peyton Manning who turned out to be one of the greatest ever to play the game. The most recent and most controversial would be Andrew Luck; while he was certainly ready for the bright lights of the league, the team did not do enough around him to protect him, and he subsequently retired prematurely at 29 years old due to injuries.
Anthony Richardson was a polarizing prospect, to say the least, as he had a throwing arm that could make all the throws with his arm strength and was exceptionally athletic, and could take off and run if need be. However, there are severe concerns as there are questions about his throwing accuracy (54.7%) and the fact that he only started thirteen games at the University of Florida and only played more in spot duty as a backup behind Emory Jones.
Richardson also has more concerns as he has limited, at best, weapons to support his growth as a star running back; Jonathan Taylor has requested a trade from the Colts. Additionally, the team’s offensive line outside of Quenton Nelson seems rather meek and might cause Richardson that will force him to take off and run much more than he should and get hit considerably more likely, resulting in more injuries.
With someone that lacks significant college starting experience, the best thing the Colts should have done with Richardson is have him sit and learn behind a solid veteran presence more than Gardner Minshew, someone like Case Keenum, or even Derek Carr to get a solid name in the room to show what he is doing right and wrong. All and all, it will be interesting to see where the Colts and Anthony Richardson go from here, and it has the potential to explode in their faces badly.