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2013 Portland Timbers Player Rankings #31: Brent Richards

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We kick off our off-season rankings with a player who did not have much of a season at all.

Yep, we only have the one picture of Brent Richards in our photo archive.
Yep, we only have the one picture of Brent Richards in our photo archive.
Steve Dipaola

Brent Richards came into the 2013 season with little in the way of expectations placed on him. Richards had failed to find a true home under John Spencer, playing up top, out wide, and even at fullback; and just how he would fit in to Caleb Porter's side was up in the air.

2012 Rank: #21

2013

Rank Average Stacey Ryan Will Michael
31 30.5 31 30 30 31

2013 was the very definition of a lost season for Richards. Only two weeks into the season, Richards went down with a torn ACL while practicing on Jeld-Wen Field. Although Richards was a constant presence on the sidelines at practice, he would not return before the season had wrapped up some nine months later.

2014

Potential Rank Average Stacey Ryan Will Michael
19 20 22 19 20 19

With any injury that keeps a player out for an entire season, you have to wonder if the player will be back next season. Luckily for Brent Richards, he should still be sporting the homegrown player tag that exempts him from using up one of the team's senior roster slots.

If Richards can make a full recovery over the off-season, he could find himself returning to a team that is shaking things up at forward with both Jose Adolfo Valencia and Ryan Johnson rumored to be leaving the team, and Frederic Piquionne still an unknown following his own extended injury issues in 2013. Richards brings something unique to the team in his fantastic aerial abilities and his natural skill at finishing. Still, the questions from last year remain: how will Richards fit into Porter's system and does he have the technique to play the type of lone forward role that the Timbers now demand?