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Bradshaw Ready for How Needed

Posted Sep 3, 2013

Ahmad Bradshaw sat out all four preseason games while mending from off-season foot surgery. With the regular season at hand, Bradshaw will lend his talents however asked.



INDIANAPOLIS – In 15-of-29 seasons in Indianapolis, the Colts have had a 1,000-yard rusher.

 

The number of times it has been accomplished has come in bulk with certain rushers – Eric Dickerson (1987-89), Marshall Faulk (1994-95, 97-98), Edgerrin James (1999-2000, 03-05) and Joseph Addai (2006-07) – hauling the freight. 

 

While Dominic Rhodes pulled the feat in 2001 as the only one-time 1,000-yard rusher, the Colts have not had anyone reach that plateau since Addai.

 

The five-year streak without a rusher getting 1,000 yards now stands as the club’s longest inactive run in its local era, and the longest of any full-season five-year stretch since the NFL expanded to 16 games in 1978.

 

Colts are joined by only Dallas, Detroit and New Orleans as teams without having a 1,000-yard rusher in the last five seasons.

 

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS 1,000-YARD RUSHERS

Times

Player

Season Total

5

Edgerrin James

1,553, 1999; 1,709, 2000; 1,259, 2003; 1,548, 2004; 1,506, 2005

4

Marshall Faulk

1,282, 1994; 1,078, 1995; 1,054, 1997; 1,319, 1998

3

Eric Dickerson

1,011, 1987; 1,659, 1988; 1,311, 1989

2

Joseph Addai

1,081, 2006; 1,072, 2007

1

Dominic Rhodes

1,104, 2001

 

Enter Ahmad Bradshaw.  Twice Bradshaw (1,235, 2010; 1,015, 2012) reached the plateau with the New York Giants, and he is the only back now with the Colts to do so.

 

Imported to help provide punch to the attack, Bradshaw is ready to rumble as needed.

 

“I have no clue,” said Bradshaw on how he will be used.  “I’m just getting the second reps and just going and taking it that route.  Hopefully, I’ll get a crack at it.”

 

Bradshaw underwent off-season work on a foot injury, and he joined the Colts in mid-June.  The bulk of his training camp work came with the medical staff.  He missed all four games and only had limited practice just recently.

 

“I’m always ready.  I’m ready to go,” said Bradshaw.  “Everything feels great and I’m full-go.

 

“I’ve been around this game and I’ve seen a lot of guys down at the beginning and come back and have great years.  That’s just the plan, to come out and be fired up and make plays for this team.”

 

Bradshaw will find playing time along with Vick Ballard and Donald Brown.  How the work will be divvied up in Pep Hamilton’s attack remains a question.

 

What is not questioned is that the team wants to have more balance in the attack than in previous seasons.

 

Balance does not necessarily mean an even split of rush-to-pass calls, it is more a matter of doing both effectively when dialed up.

 

In preseason, the Colts did run on 45.6 percent of their snaps, a better mix than the 39.7 mark of a year ago.  The preseason average of 3.8 yards per carry matched 2012’s mark, and Indianapolis hopes to return to at least a 4.0 average that has been accomplished once since 2007.

 

Bradshaw carries a 4.6 average for 921 career attempts.  He has 12 career 100-yard rushing games and 10 outings with at least 20 carries, and he likes the notion that his presence will bolster the attack.

 

“Of course I do,” said Bradshaw.  “Just like I said, I love this game and I’m going to give my 100 percent every time and every Sunday.  I don’t know how the plays are going to go and who’s going to get how many, but when I’m out there, you can expect full speed.”

 

Bradshaw says he has a motivation level to prove teams wrong that by-passed him in free agency.  Every back in the league plays through pain for the love of competition, and that is what Colts fans will see on Sunday.

 

“A lot of teams that could have accepted me and gave me a shot that didn’t, I want to just prove everybody wrong,” said Bradshaw.  “I’ve got this chip on my shoulder, coming in a seventh-round running back in 2007.  I play like it’s my first year.

 

“This is what I’ve been doing for 21 years, man.  I love this game.  I love the contact.  A lot of people get nervous over the contact and different things but I love it.  There’s nothing that can surprise me, and I just look to be ready.”


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