It should come as no surprise, but it's all but official now. This from Pro Football Talk today:
Colts RB Ahmad Bradshaw will have neck surgery and miss the rest of the season, per league source.— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) October 8, 2013
Last week there were rumors that Ahmad Bradshaw's neck injury suffered agains the San Francisco 49ers would cause him to miss the remainder of the season, and reports began to surface that it was a possibility. Bradshaw got second opinions last week and Chuck Pagano said he would take a few weeks to decide whether to have surgery or not. Sounds like it didn't take him that long after all.
According to Pro Football Talk, citing league sources, Bradshaw is out for the year. That means it will be up to Trent Richardson and Donald Brown to carry the load for the Colts this year - certainly not the worst possible situation and still a quite good backfield, but not nearly as good as it could have been.
This makes the trade for Richardson even bigger, however, as it would have been Donald Brown as the starting running back for the rest of the year. As I wrote a week ago, Brown has had a very good year, but that has been because of his smaller role. Richardson, however, is a work horse. He can handle it.
Still, I don't expect the team to use Robert Hughes - a fullback - as their third running back all season long. They might until Stanley Havili comes back (which I would doubt is this Sunday), but more likely is that rookie Kerwynn Williams is re-signed to replace Bradshaw. That's a move that I definitely expect to happen.
It's a real shame to lose Bradshaw for the season, as he was running really well before he was injured and looking good. He is now the second running back to be lost for the season for the Colts, joining Vick Ballard.
UPDATE: ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting the same thing as PFT. And Mike Chappell of the Indianapolis Star has confirmed the report as well. If anybody would know, it'd be him. Yeah, this is as close to official as it can get.
Ahmad Bradshaw, neck surgery, out for year.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 8, 2013
Can confirm #colts Ahmad Bradshaw is done for the season. Opting for season-ending neck surgery.— Mike Chappell (@mchappell51) October 8, 2013