In a surprise move earlier this week, the New York Giants released starting running back Ahmad Bradshaw.
The move sent shockwaves through the an organization that followed up a Super Bowl XLVI win with a disappointing 2012 campaign that saw them fall short of postseason contention.
With Bradshaw available to the highest bidder, the shift tailback should draw interest from several teams looking to improve their running game. The Jets are one of the teams that could pursue Bradshaw as the team's commitment to the ground and pound style of football fits right in with the skill set of the former Big Blue star. A tandem of Bradshaw and either Bilal Powell or Shonn Greene would give the Jets a similar look to their AFC Championship days where Thomas Jones in 2009 and LaDanian Tomlinson in 2010 brought the Jets to the top of the league in total rushing and provided the perfect compliment to Mark Sanchez and the passing game.
The Giants decision to release Bradshaw stems from two motives. First, Big Blue is looking to clear cap space for the upcoming signings of wide receivers Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz.
Bradshaw is also coming off a foot surgery at 26 years of age. With newcomers Andre Brown and David Wilson having good years, Bradshaw becomes a back with a history of injuries and becomes a risk that Big Blue is not willing to take moving forward.
"Bradshaw was drafted 250th in a class of 255 and to excel and to perform the way that he has, and to accomplish what he has, is a great tribute to him,” coach Tom Coughlin said. "Regardless of the circumstances, he’s going to give you everything he’s got."
Despite only playing 12 games last year, Bradshaw still finished with over 1,000 yards on the ground. His experience as a playoff performer can only help the Jets find their way back to the success that they had grown accustomed to in Rex Ryan's first two years at the helm. The decision also makes a lot of sense logistically for Bradshaw.
Signing with Gang Green, he would not have to uproot himself from the Tri-State area. His only change would be donning the Green and White and performing at the level that brought the Giants two championships in the last six years.