Ed: A Healthy Bradshaw a Perfect Fit Wednesday, 27 March 2013 08:11 Written by Ed Bouchette Good morning,
Would you trade Rashard Mendenhall for Ahmad Bradshaw?
Bradshaw will pay a visit to the Steelers on Thursday, according to reports by both CBS and the NFL. The Steelers have been rumored to be interested in him for several weeks and Bradshaw identified them last weekend among three teams that have shown an interest in him.
The one thing that has prevented Bradshaw from perhaps being a hotter commodity has been his offseason foot surgery. He fought through that right foot injury that has bothered him over the past two seasons to rush for 1,015 yards last season with a 4.6-yard average per carry, the same as his career average.
The Giants drafted him in the seventh round from Marshall in 2007 after he ran for 1,523 yards for the Herd as a junior. He had early fumbling problems in New York but after he led the Giants with 1,235 yards rushing in 2010, they signed him to a four-year, $18 million contract with half of that guaranteed.
However, the Giants drafted David Wilson of Virginia Tech in the first round last year and the writing was on the chalkboard for Bradshaw. They released him Feb. 6, supposedly to clear salary cap space (so they could sign Ryan Mundy?).
Bradshaw is not a huge back – at 5-10, 215 he’s not as big as Mendenhall – but he gives a big effort. He clearly would be No. 1 with the Steelers, something Bradshaw desires.
“There’s a lot of teams out there that need running backs,’’ he told ESPN radio last weekend. “I want to go to a team [where] I can be the No. 1 back, get multiple carries every game. I just want to be able to help and be a big part of it.’’
Bradshaw had a screw inserted in his right foot late in January that reportedly would require a 10-week recovery, and we are about eight weeks out now. While the Steelers will give him a physical, they may not work him out because it’s still a little early for that after the surgery. He only removed his walking boot last week.
His injury status should hold his money demands down and it’s possible he would want a one-year contract so he can prove in 2013 that he is healthy and back to the kind of form that he was in 2010, before the first of his injuries to his foot in 2011.
The Packers reportedly also want Bradshaw to pay them a visit.
The Steelers have roughly $2 million left under the cap, so they don’t have a lot of maneuverability. However, they can change that in a hurry by reworking another contract, extending someone or releasing someone.
Players such as Bradshaw – and maybe even Victor Butler, since he is still on his worldwide tour and has not signed with a team yet – likely are another reason the Steelers have closed the door to James Harrison. They need his cap room elsewhere.