by Aaron Wilson
September 20, 02013
Former Cleveland Browns team president Mike Holmgren was highly critical of the Browns' trading running back Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts in exchange for a 2014 first-round draft pick.
Holmgren said he'd walk if he was a head coach and the team traded his best offensive player.
"I struggled with it,'' told KJR in Seattle. "Philosophically, if I am the coach and someone came in anywhere and did that, I'd say 'OK, fire me, or I'm going to quit. Or we're going to both go into the owner and talk about this and the we'll see who's still standing.'"
Holmgren was fired by ownership and Joe Banner after last season and traded up last year to acquire Richardson out of Alabama.
"How do you make your team better by trading your best player?'' Holmgren said. "He's the best offensive player. He's a valuable, valuable guy. Clearly, the coach is OK with this because they sat at the news conference together. I personally would not be OK with it. It was my best offensive player, a young guy. Not an eight-year vet. He's a young guy.''
"You can't tell me some of those players aren't asking some of the questions you and I are asking. They were friends with (Richardson). It's too wild. This sort of thing doesn't happen, and it happened, so asking questions about it would be natural.''
Why make the deal?
"To me, they're putting all their eggs for next season,'' said Holmgren. "They started off 0-2, they couldn't score any points, I think it was a little bit of a knee-jerk reaction. There's a little bit of a 'what's going on?' I don't know this for sure but I can sense it.
"Indianapolis is probably going to have a pretty good year, so that pick is probably going to be 23, 24, right in there. And to package something (to move up in the draft), we couldn't package our four and our seven for (Robert Griffin III) last year and we had more ammunition (Holmgren offered the No. 4 and No. 22 as well, but the Redskins offered three first-rounders)."
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Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun.