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Seattle Seahawks WR Paul Richardson hoping to contribute

By The Sports Xchange
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Paul Richardson (10) catches a pass for a 32-yard gain. Photo by Jim Bryant/UPI
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Paul Richardson (10) catches a pass for a 32-yard gain. Photo by Jim Bryant/UPI | License Photo

RENTON, Wash. -- After rehabilitating for months to return from a torn ACL suffered in the 2014 playoffs, receiver Paul Richardson's 2015 season with the Seahawks lasted one game and one catch.

In his season debut with Seattle against the Arizona Cardinals, Richardson caught just one pass for 40 yards before being forced to the sideline with a hamstring injury.

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"It was right before I caught the ball when I felt the tug," Richardson said. "If that weren't the case I would have been in for the touchdown. They won't catch me from behind. That's not happening."

Richardson - Seattle's first pick of the 2014 NFL Draft in the second round - has loads of potential. His speed is a rarity. The Seahawks' coaching staff were itching to pair his speed and ability to challenge a secondary deep along with receivers Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, Jermaine Kearse and tight end Jimmy Graham.

Their opportunity to do so last season was fleeting. The hamstring injury landed Richardson on injured reserve and ended his season as soon as it was getting started.

"It was pretty defeating," Richardson said. "My attitude, my spirits were down. I had to find a way to pick back up to be able to come back for this offseason. That's what I did and I'm pretty proud about how things have gone since then."

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Richardson spent the first nine weeks of the season ineligible to play while on the physically unable to perform list. He had suffered a torn ACL in Seattle's playoff victory over the Carolina Panthers in January, 2014. He was attempting to catch a pass while covered by Bene Benwikere when his knee gave out.

Against Arizona, Richardson beat Jerraud Powers off the line of scrimmage and Russell Wilson delivered a perfect strike. Then the hamstring gave out again. Richardson said the injury wasn't related to the ACL rehab, it was a separate issue entirely. Nevertheless, it was difficult to handle.

"It was pretty frustrating because I want to play football," he said.

Richardson said it was even more difficult because he was healthy again when his teammates were still playing in the playoffs. He had to watch Seattle's offense explode the second half of the season without him and was unable to help in the postseason when he had fully recovered.

But now that Richardson is back healthy, he wants to help Seattle's offense take another step forward this season.

"I just think that I can come in just with more speed and stretching the field," Richardson said. Guys are going to be open underneath and then when they start paying attention to that we're going to be getting them downfield as well. So I just think I'm going to add to what they're already doing."

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