At 1:38 EDT, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Colts and Ahmad Bradshaw had officially agreed to a one-year contract.
It was a bit of a roller coaster of news on the matter with instant updates coming from everywhere. Bradshaw visited the team complex last week, but contract talks stalled out shortly after. Then, on June 7, the Indianapolis Star’s Mike Chappell reassured Colts fans that the deal wasn’t dead, but that the team and Bradshaw were still trying to work something out. Yesterday, Pro Football Talk claimed that the former Giants running back might be considering the New England Patriots… Again, Chappell reassured fans, this time saying they were close to some kind of resolution. No Patriots visit. Bradshaw is a Colt, for a year, anyway.
Ahmad Bradshaw spent his first 6 seasons with the New York Giants after they picked him in the 7th round in 2007. Bradshaw quickly became an important part of New York’s RB rotation, gaining key yards in both Super Bowl Wins over New England. Bradshaw rushed for 1015 yards and 6 touchdowns last season, averaging a healthy 4.59 yards per carry in 12 games.
In January, however, Bradshaw had a third surgery on his right foot (According to NFL.com, he’s also had surgeries on his left foot and both ankles). Still, his release was considered a cap casualty, and while he isn’t likely to shoulder much more than half the rushing load in Indianapolis, if healthy, he should prove to be a big upgrade in the Colts thin backfield.
Having Bradshaw means the Colts are more likely to have at least two viable healthy running backs. Last season, after Donald Brown went down, Vick Ballard had to take over nearly all the carries because the team didn’t have another option they felt good about. That left Ballard worn down and banged up near the end of the season. Bradshaw gives them a very viable option at running back, one who ensures the team can stay with a running back by committee system and keep their guys fresh throughout games and even the season, provided at least two of them can stay healthy.
According to Pro Football Talk, the Bradshaw deal is a $1.1 million base salary for 2013. Bradshaw also receives a $250k signing bonus and up to $650k in health-related incentives. The deal will count between $1.35 million and $2 million against the cap, depending on the aforementioned incentives. -KJR
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