Is Paul Richardson’s small frame cause for concern?


Sep 1, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Buffaloes wide receiver Paul Richardson (6) avoids the tackle of Colorado State Rams linebacker Aaron Davis (37) during in the fourth quarter at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Buffaloes defeated the Rams 41-27. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Six-foot, 175 pounds.

These were Paul Richardson’s height and weight at the combine. Nothing in particular stood out about them, in fact, many scouts passed on him altogether simply because of his small frame and weight.

Thirty-eight inches, 4.40 seconds.

These are two more numbers, referring to Richardson’s vertical jump and 40 time, which caught the scouts’ attention.

As a WR in the 2013 college season, Colorado team captain Paul Richardson was undoubtedly a sensational talent. The question was, is he big enough? It was easy to fall in love with his pure speed and leaping ability, not so much in regards to his thin frame and small hands. But the Seahawks are known to be team not merely interested in numbers, they dig deeper into the player’s character, focus on his strengths, and visualize him fitting into their system without changing his game too much.

According to GM John Schneider, Richardson was the top rated player on their big board and one of the main reasons why they traded out of the first round.

In an interview Monday with Brock and Danny on 710 AM ESPN radio, Schneider addressed their approach on why they drafted Richardson:

“So here’s the cool thing about Paul,” Schneider said. “He’s really kind of a combination of DeSean (Jackson), Doug Baldwin and Donald Driver.”

He listed Driver due to lean body, long arms, great hands and mental toughness, all things they believe Richardson will bring to the table. Doug Baldwin was brought up due to his initial quickness off the line and ability to “shake you” right at the line of scrimmage; both attributes Schneider thinks Paul will bring to the table.

Along with all those comparisons, Schneider adds his ability to “get up on top of you” and “throttle the speed.”

“When you watch him, the easiest thing to do is say, he’s 170 pounds he’ll get knocked around,” Schneider says. “But the coolest thing about him is his initial separation, that and the fact that he was the whole team.”

Referring to his captain status and speaking about how last year, Colorado was his team and he did everything in his power to help them succeed.

John Schneider then throws out a stat about how Richardson had something like 183 targets and four drops: “He’s just really unique, and I just love the fact that people weren’t talking about him because of that build. But it’s like, he’s got broad shoulders and he’s probably going to end up being about 190 pounds.”

So if you’re an average fan looking at Paul Richardson and thinking, this guy will have injury problems and will never be durable enough, John Schneider reassures us all in looking at the positives of his play.

It’s hard to ignore a 4.40 second 40 time (reported to be as fast as 4.28), 38-inch vertical, team captain, with 183 targets and only four drops. Add in the fact that the Seahawks development of players has been second to none (Baldwin, Jermaine Kearse, K.J. Wright and Bobby Wagner, etc.), and with all the success of recent draft picks, the fans almost have to wait and see these players like Richardson develop in to the stars they are envisioned to be.