We haven't spent a lot of time here at Stampede Blue talking about the possibility of running back and upcoming free agent Ahmad Bradshaw returning to the Colts because, well, it seemed very unlikely to happen. Everybody assumed that the Colts weren't going to bring him back. But perhaps that was a mistake.
According to Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star, there might be mutual interest to Bradshaw donning the horseshoe next season:
"But here's an interesting nugget: According to one source, the Colts and Bradshaw have, in fact, had recent conversations. Another source confirmed the club has not closed the door on a return by the 27-year old two-time 1,000-yard rusher.
"It's too early to say whether this will amount to anything, but the situation bears watching."
He tweeted about the issue shortly after publishing the article, saying:
I had kinda closed the door on Ahmad returning to Indy, but wondering now if that was premature. Very sketchy but interesting. #Colts— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) March 4, 2014
In his seven year career, Bradshaw has rushed for 4,418 yards and 34 touchdowns while averaging 4.6 yards per carry for his career. He has had two 1,000+ yard rushing seasons and helped the New York Giants win two Super Bowls. Last year, in his first season with the Colts, he played in only 3 games, rushing for 186 yards and 2 touchdowns on 4.5 yards per carry. Bradshaw had the best individual performance by a Colts running back in the entire 2013 season in week three, when he rushed 19 times for 95 yards (5.0 yards per carry) and a touchdown, adding another 16 receiving yards on 3 catches. That game, a win on the road against the San Francisco 49ers, was also the best team running performance of the year for the Colts, but it was also the game in which Bradshaw suffered a neck injury that ended his season.
The main knock against Bradshaw is that he is injury prone. Consider, however, that in his first six years in the league he missed only 12 games combined, and in 2013 he missed 13. At the same time, however, only once has he played all 16 games in a season. For the Colts, the main question is whether Bradshaw can stay healthy (if indeed he is healthy right now after his neck injury) and, if so, how much to invest in a guy that has had a bit of trouble doing so. I can't imagine the Colts will pay him much if they do reach a deal, and in that case, I really don't mind bringing Bradshaw back at all. I really don't know if it will happen, and honestly, it very well might not. But at the very least, perhaps we shouldn't have completely ruled out a return quite yet - there seems to still be a chance that Ahmad Bradshaw will be back with the Colts. He is a good running back and helped the Colts tremendously early on in the 2013 season. With Trent Richardson's struggles last year and with Vick Ballard coming back from a torn ACL, there are some questions at the running back position. Re-signing Ahmad Bradshaw would add more questions to that mix, but it also might bring some answers.