Colts' race for starting RB spot on hold

June, 2, 2014
Jun 2
3:05
PM ET

INDIANAPOLIS – Nervousness from the Indianapolis Colts' faithful seemed to set in last week when running backs Vick Ballard and Ahmad Bradshaw did not participate in organized team activities and fellow running back Trent Richardson wore a red jersey during the session.

This month was supposed to be when the race for the starting running back position would start.

I'm not surprised about Ballard and Bradshaw not taking part. Ballard is working back from a torn ACL. Bradshaw had neck surgery last season and he's a veteran who doesn't necessarily need to take part in OTA. As far as Richardson goes, he definitely needs to be out there -- even if he's limited with the no-contact jersey -- because it's all about continuing to get familiar with the system for him.

Richardson, who had shoulder surgery earlier this year, said he's not sure how much longer he'll have to wear the red jersey.

Don't be surprised if Ballard doesn't take part in any of the offseason activities until training camp starts in late July.

"I've got tendinitis, keep the tendinitis down and get the strength back up," Ballard said "I probably could participate now but there's really no reason to rush. Just want to make sure I'm feeling good for training camp."

Bradshaw, Richardson and Ballard will all have an opportunity to get carries next season. Only one of them will be the workhorse, though. Coach Chuck Pagano said during the NFL owners meetings in Orlando, Florida back in March that they want one guy to get the bulk of the carries.

The race, the one needed to help the Colts' passing game, is on hold for the moment.

"I've been in this situation before and I know how this game goes," Bradshaw said. "Being a running back in this league is tough. I think it's tough for any starting running back, or one running back to stay healthy. .... To have these other two guys with you it's going to do nothing but help us."


Mike Wells

ESPN Indianapolis Colts reporter

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