The Indianapolis Colts have a new running back on their roster, signing veteran Ahmad Bradshaw to a one-year deal on Tuesday. The move gives them a veteran presence – and I would expect a new leader on their backfield depth chart – heading into 2013.
Bradshaw, 27, has recorded 1,000-plus rushing yards in two of his last three seasons. He’s also scored 32 total times and has finished no worse than 25th in fantasy points at his position since 2009. The problem with Bradshaw hasn’t been production – it’s been injuries.
The Marshall product has dealt with multiple ailments in recent years, none more problematic than the foot issues that have required multiple surgeries to repair. It’s those durability problems that make it tough to envision a scenario where Bradshaw would become a true featured back (like Marshall Faulk or Edgerrin James) for coach Chuck Pagano.
Of course, that doesn’t mean he won’t lead the team in backfield touches and cause Ballard to play more of a secondary role in the offense – and in fantasy football drafts. Owners should consider Bradshaw a viable No. 2 fantasy runner and worth a middle-round selection, while Ballard falls into the later rounds as a potential handcuff or No. 3 or 4 runner.
With Bradshaw now in the mix, neither Donald Brown nor Delone Carter will have draft value.
Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on NFL.com and NFL Network and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Have a question on anything fantasy related? Tweet it to @Michael_Fabiano or send a question via Facebook!