Going into the offseason NFL teams sometimes look to make a splash. Acquiring a player like Reggie Bush or Greg Jennings seems like a good idea. It might be a good idea for a year or two. While older, they still are skilled and can contribute if used correctly. Ahmad Bradshaw should not be clumped with Bush or Jennings. A productive and under-appreciated back, he is in the prime of his career and is among the elite free agent options available.
Bradshaw is a young 26-years-old. He has carried the ball more than 200 times only twice in his career, and barely saw the field until 2009. He has never started more than 12 games in a season, and each time he has started 10 or more times he has responded by rushing for 1,000 yards. His career average is 4.6 yards a carry.
In 2012 Bradshaw rushed for 100 yards in a game four times, and reached 200 against Cleveland in week five. In games where he got at least 16 rushing attempts, he averaged over 100 yards per contest. When the Giants had to win to keep their playoff hopes alive, Bradshaw gained 107 yards on 16 carries against Philadelphia in week 17.
As a pass catcher Bradshaw is solid. He makes big plays when given the ball in space, catching passes of 20, 41, and 59 during 2012. He averaged nearly 11 yards a reception this year, and for his career has nearly 1,100 receiving yards.
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Bradshaw's biggest weakness appears to be his habit of fumbling. He led NFL backs in 2010 with seven fumbles. However, over the last two seasons he has fumbled only four times on more than 400 carries.
Since given the opportunity to play a big role, Bradshaw has been able to find the endzone. His 32 scores in the last four seasons on a team that throws a lot and splits carries among a variety of backs is impressive.
With two Super Bowl rings, Bradshaw knows what it takes to win. Unlike many of the free agent or rookie options available, he can be a lead back immediately. In fact, his numbers indicate that he is deserving of a starting spot somewhere. When given a chance in the past Bradshaw has been able to produce good numbers for a winning team.