Following a strong career at Alabama, Trent Richardson entered the NFL with a lot of promise. The Browns chose him with the third pick in the 2012 NFL draft. Unfortunately, the running back was ultimately a bust in the league. But Richardson made millions despite his short pro career.
Being such a high draft pick netted him a signing bonus in excess of $13 million. But Richardson lost a significant chunk of that. We’re not talking about what he had to pay his agent or how much he paid in taxes. Instead, let’s discussed the money Richardson lost to his own family.
Trent Richardson becomes an NFL bust
The Browns made Richardson their starter from Week 1, and he started 15 games in his rookie season. He carried the ball 267 times for 950 yards and 11 touchdowns, catching another 51 balls for 367 yards and a touchdown. He started two games for the Browns in 2013 before they traded him to the Colts on September 18 for a 2014 first-round pick.
Richardson started eight of 14 games for the Colts, running for just 458 yards and three touchdowns. He played in 15 more games for Indianapolis — 12 starts — in 2014, totaling 159 carries for 519 yards and three scores. The Colts cut Richardson in March 2015, and although he signed with the Raiders and Ravens over the next few years, he never played in another NFL game.
How Richardson spent his NFL money
Upon being drafted, Richardson signed a four-year contract with the Browns that totaled $20.5 million. Given the hype surrounding him, Richardson probably thought this would be the first of many eight-figure contracts he would eventually sign. So he quickly spent some of the money from his rookie contract.
Richardson bought himself a six-bedroom house in Cleveland for $825,000. He also rented his mom a house there, saying he “had a chance to make sure [his] mom never had to work again.” He also bought a $350,000 house for his grandmother in his native Pensacola, Fla.
By October 2015, when Richardson wasn’t on an NFL roster and had no income coming in, he looked at his finances for the first time. He noticed his bank account had less in it than it should and realized “they” took advantage of him? So who were they? Sadly, his friends and family.
Richardson loses $1.6 million to friends and family
Between January and October 2015, Trent Richardson’s friends and family spent $1.6 million of his money, according to Market Watch. They paid for 11 Netflix accounts and eight Hulu accounts under Richardson’s name. They also used his account to purchases things on Amazon, and they charged him for bottle service at bars.
In 2016, Richardson said he doesn’t use the internet much and he doesn’t drink, noting he only spends about $300 on himself every two weeks. His college coach, Nick Saban, has said Richardson “wants to please everyone. That makes it difficult to disappoint people with the word ‘no.'”
After discovering how much money he had lost, the running back stopped paying for everyone except his immediate family. He even went so far as to take his brother, Terrell, off his payroll. Richardson had been paying Terrell a $100,000 annual salary to be his personal assistant. Terrell was so upset when he found out how much people had taken from his brother that Terrell said he “would never ask him for another dime.”