NFL Rumors: Who Will Back up New York Giants RB Ahmad Bradshaw?

By Jeff Shull

The New York Giants, like most NFL teams, are undergoing a bit of roster turnover from their Super Bowl championship season. Most notably, Mario Manningham and Brandon Jacobs bolted for the west coast, signing with the San Francisco 49ers. The Giants drafted a player at both wide receiver and running back in the first two rounds, and the rookies will be looking to make their impact in the 2012 season.

But is 2012 first round pick David Wilson ready to back up Ahmad Bradshaw from day one? ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk is skeptical.

“Wilson has shown the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield. What remains to be seen is how fast he can pick up the offense and protection schemes while adjusting to the pro game. The Giants will also learn more about Wilson in full contact practices.”

The Virginia Tech product rushed for over 1,700 yards last season and led the nation with 990 yards after contact, 267 more than No. 3 overall pick Trent Richardson. Wilson has elite speed and may be a better inside runner than people give him credit for.

However, to be the backup he definitely needs to make sure he knows the offense in and out, including and most importantly protection schemes. You won’t last very long on the Giants if you cannot pass block.

Joining Wilson in the quest for the backup spot is veteran D.J. Ware, 2011 seventh round pick DaRel Scott and 2009 fourth round pick Andre Brown. Ware seems the likely candidate to backup Bradshaw for now, but Wilson could take that spot from him in training camp.

Offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride certainly seems happy with the acquisition of Wilson.

“It looks like there is something that can give you some excitement,” Gilbride said. “I don’t know if we have had that kind of guy. Tiki [Barber] was a tremendous all-around back. Brandon gave you a certain [physical style], Ahmad gives the toughness. But this guy has the kind of explosion that I’m not sure how many guys in the league have.”

Wilson has been impressive in camp so far, but the job is far from locked up.


Jeff is an NFL Featured Columnist for He contributes mainly to the New York Giants and NFL Rumors pages. He also will occasionally touch on the NBA and humorous videos involving all sports.

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