A familiar face is back on the field for the Seattle Seahawks.
After two seasons with the Washington Football Team, former second-round pick Paul Richardson has returned to Seattle to aid a speedy wide receiver corps. Richardson, who played for Seattle from 2014-17, looks to once again show off his elite wheels and help the Seahawks in their dynamic aerial attack.
“It feels great to be back in Seattle,” Richardson said on Sunday. “I hope to bring some speed to the team, to add to it actually, got a lot of fast guys, got some playmakers."
A lot has changed for Richardson since his breakout 2017 season, where he had 49 receptions for 703 yards in 16 games and 13 starts for the Seahawks.
He signed a five-year, $40 million deal with the Redskins ahead of the 2018 season, but injuries plagued Richardson’s career in Washington and ultimately led to his demise.
A shoulder injury ended his 2018 campaign, limiting him to just 20 receptions for 262 yards and seven games. He played in 10 games in 2019 and caught 28 passes for 245 yards and two touchdowns, but Richardson found himself on Injured Reserve following a nagging hamstring injury.
Two years after the Washington Football Team thought they found their diamond-in-the-rough with Richardson, he was released.
“I wasn’t surprised,” Richardson said of the breakup. “My agent was up front with them as far as future plans for me or not. We just wanted the opportunity, obviously before I went through the things that I went through, to have time to prepare and go somewhere else for another job. Obviously, I would have liked for it to worked out, but you know, it just didn’t."
Richardson’s road back to Seattle didn’t come without some highs and lows. Over the coronavirus pandemic, the 28-year-old lost his grandmother and became a father to son, Caden.
Protests against racial injustice and police violence in the United States have run rampant following the shooting of Jacob Blake, and the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
Now that he’s a father, Richardson says he feels inclined to speak out about things bigger than football in effort to enact policy change for his son’s future.
“It’s affected me a lot,” Richardson said. “First, I always think of my kid and the world I would like my kid to grow up in, and what I can do personally for first, my family, and then the people around me. So you know it hurts for all of these things to be going on, but for us to be able to come together and start making plans, making people more aware of what’s going on, and creating spaces for people to learn more about what’s going on, so they know what steps to forward. I think that we’re doing a good job of that.”
The Seahawks recently canceled their 14th practice of training camp last Saturday in effort to make sure every player on their roster was registered to vote.
Richardson implored others to do the same.
“I think more people voting will help,” Richardson said. “Because that’s how the decisions are made in this world for the most part. So, I’m doing what I can, I’m getting my family to do what they can, and as a team, we’re kind of spreading that through ourselves and our families as well.”
In his reunion with Seattle, expect a more-matured, renewed Richardson on the field. His mission to elevate the offense is palpable. But like so many of his Seahawks teammates, his mission off-the-field is something much greater.
[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Seahawks Podcast with host Joe Fann and special guest Evan Silva].