John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

RB - Donald Brown Steps Up for the Indianapolis Colts

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

It’s tough to figure out where RB – Donald Brown has been for the first four years of his NFL career, but in 2013, he has finally arrived.

The former 1st round pick of the Indianapolis Colts has been quite the underachiever, since being selected with the 27th overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft. However, 2013 has brought about a shocking change for the running back. Brown has been born again hard in the Indianapolis backfield, and it has been quite the sight to see.

Donald Brown was brought to the Colts, with hopes of becoming the team’s franchise running back. That title never came to fruition, as Brown never seemed to make a splash in the Indianapolis backfield. Brown’s best season was in 2011, where he totaled 731 rushing and receiving yards and five touchdowns, in a season where the Colts won only two games.

The Colts drafted replacement running backs (Delone Carter, Vick Ballard) and brought in free agent rusher Ahmad Bradshaw, as Brown slipped farther and farther down the depth chart. As the 2013 season began, Brown (in the last year of his contract) was the Colts’ third string running back.

The horse-kick to the head may have come when the Colts traded their first round pick in 2014 to the Cleveland Browns, for the right to RB - Trent Richardson. The season-ending injuries to Ballard and Bradshaw brought about the trade, which may have sparked something inside of the former 1st round draft pick. Richardson has been less-than impressive. Brown, on the other hand, has turned into the best running back on the roster, for the AFC South champions. Brown has 90 attempts for 506 yards this season, for a 5.6 yard average per carry. In 2013, Brown has already reached career-highs in touchdowns (seven) and receiving yards (210).

It may have taken a while for Donald Brown to step into the spotlight, but in the upcoming AFC Playoffs, the Indianapolis Colts may need him to carry the load.

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Tags: Afc-playoffs Indianapolis Colts NFL NFL Draft

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