I think Mendenhall will return to our lineup at midseason or so after spending time on the PUP. He may not be 100% at that point, but he should be able to contribute in a committee situation down the stretch to keep everyone fresh. Overall, I expect Mendenhall to have roughly the same number of carries Redman got last year, and I expect Redman to have roughly the same number of carries Mendenhall got last year.
Because of this injury, Rashard will not be entering free agency at the end of this season in prime condition to cash in, so I expect him to re-sign a moderate short-term contract in order prove himself in the hopes that he can get top dollar in the near future. If this comes to pass, I expect Mendenhall to truly shine in 2013. He'll be motivated to prove himself to turn his moderate short-deal into a significant long-term deal (either in Pittsburgh or somewhere else).
Also, 2013 will be the second year of Adams-Colon-Pouncey-DeCastro-Gilbert. I think we will see improvement this season over what we have had in the past here, but after a full year to gel, I think this OL could potentially be one of the best in the game in 2013. Mendenhall's never had the opportunity to run behind a quality OL during his NFL career, and I think we'll be really impressed with what we see from him when he is not being hit behind the line on every other carry.
Final Ruthless Mock:
1.22 CB Marcus Peters, 6'0" 197 lbs., Washington
2.56 FS Damarious Randall, 5'11" 196 lbs., Arizona State
3.87 TE Clive Walford, 6'4" 251 lbs., Miami
4.121 DE Henry Anderson, 6'6" 294 lbs., Stanford
5.160 WR Titus Davis, 6'1" 196 lbs., Central Michigan
6.199 OLB Kyle Emanuel, 6'3" 255 lbs., North Dakota State
6.212c OLB Max Valles, 6'5" 251 lbs., Virginia
7.239 RB John Crockett, 6'0" 217 lbs., North Dakota State