New Colts running back Trent Richardson will be involved in Indianapolis' game plan for Sunday's non-conference matchup with the San Francisco 49ers.
"We didn't bring him in to be the water boy," Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said on Thursday. "He'll be ready to roll."
Indianapolis traded away a first-round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft to the Cleveland Browns to acquire Richardson, the No. 3 overall draft pick in the 2012 draft.
The 49ers learned of the trade Wednesday evening after wrapping up practice in Santa Clara. With a few days for Richardson to learn Indianapolis' offensive system, members of the defense expected to see the hard-running second-year pro this Sunday.
Pagano and the Colts will look to utilize Richardson's talents along with veteran running back Ahmad Bradshaw, who took over starting duties after Vick Ballard was lost for the season with a major knee injury.
Indianapolis' head coach said Richardson would play against the 49ers "as much as he can handle."
The trade caught everyone by surprise. First, Colts owner Jim Irsay hinted of a possible trade earlier on Wednesday in a series of tweets from his verified account. Hours later, Indianapolis pulled off the stunning deal to acquire a 22-year-old running back, who joins a playoff team brimming with potential to make a Super Bowl run.
The 49ers will have to adjust defensive plans with Richardson's involvement on Sunday. Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio is scheduled to speak with the media on Thursday where he'll share his reaction to the Richardson trade.
Richardson, at times, enjoyed success as Cleveland's featured offensive weapon. He carried the ball 298 times for 1,055 yards with 11 rushing touchdowns in 17 career games for the Browns.
In 2013, Richardson has 31 carries for 105 yards (3.4 per carry) with no touchdowns. He also has seven receptions for 51 yards.
Richardson, the 5-foot-9, 225-pound running back, offers plenty of options for the Colts as a runner and receiver out of the backfield. With his new team, Richardson has selected No. 34 for the Colts.
"He's a rolling ball of butcher knives," Pagano said of his running back.
Richardson spoke with the Indianapolis press in front of his new locker.
"I want to be the guy that puts the team on his shoulders," Richardson said.