Welcome back to the NFL, Trent Richardson. This is what winning football looks like.
However, he found out about the trade, jumping a sinking ship in Cleveland and catching a lifeline in Indianapolis cannot be all that bad for the former Alabama star.
The one thing that may have been missing from the Colts becoming a serious playoff contender and a team capable of playing in New York in February, was a solid running game.
Enter Mr. Richardson.
I will admit that when I first heard of the trade, I thought the idea of my story before the season about Richardson being too much of a fantasy football risk was looking more like gospel. But after further review, the play on the field has been reversed.
Cleveland gave up on its star player and the team for 2013.
Indianapolis may have gotten it the better side of the best trade in the NFL since Alex Smith was traded to the Kansas City Chiefs.
What a way to prove your worth with your new team than to play against the 49ers this weekend. Head coach Chuck Pagano said Richardson would play this weekend, that he was not brought in to sit on the bench.
Is it possible the addition of Richardson to the team made other NFL franchises pucker up just a bit more?
Coming off a 29-3 thrashing at the hands of the Seahawks, this gives San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh just one more thing to worry about in preparation for this week's game.
And all the while you know Andrew Luck is grinning ear to ear. Manning and James reborn in Indiana!
Here are three bold predictions for this contest this weekend.
Richardson has a career day
If moving from Cleveland wasn’t a joyous occasion enough, the idea of hearing about his trade other than on the phone in a professional manner may drive Richardson to now be the back he was thought to be when he was first drafted.
Every NFL player has their own motivation to be a star in this league. Richardson’s may come from a team that apparently did not want him. What a way to get the legs moving. What if he runs for 150 yards against the stout 49ers' defense? That would not only make a statement, it would also make the media question how good the 49ers really are.
I have never made a prediction like this, but I am going to. I think this now becomes the best game of the weekend and in doing so, I cannot pick a winner.
What if it goes on and on and one. Like the Buffalo Wild Wings commercials, we have the power to make this game last.
And with good reason. Should this really end? Should great football really end? NO! And this is one of those contests with Colin Kaepernick and Andrew Luck where each quarterback could throw for 350 yards and three scores.
Don’t make it stop!
Eric Reid to the rescue
Even though he is being treated for a concussion, look for Eric Reid to have a huge game, especially in coming up to the line and helping to stop Richardson.
I wasn’t sold on Reid being a first round draft pick this offseason. I was wrong. Reid is one of those players like Bill Walsh used to draft, who just fits into the plans of the team and becomes a star.
“I don’t think we necessarily change the game plan,” Reid said on 49ers.com. “We just know it takes a little bit more oomph to get him on the ground… He’s a hard runner. He likes to fall forward.”
Reid would know. San Francisco’s rookie safety played against Richardson collegiately, when they were at LSU and Alabama, respectively, in the ultra-physical SEC. They'll meet again at Candlestick Park, where Richardson's Indianapolis Colts come to visit on Sunday.
Reid should know a thing or two about Richardson, as he played at LSU and faced Richardson - who played at Alabama.