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Ahmad Bradshaw made himself very clear during an interview on ESPN 1050 on Monday night: He wants to remain a New York Giant.
But the 25-year-old running back, who could become an unrestricted free agent if and when the lockout is lifted because he's already played four seasons, understands that the NFL is a business, and he may have to move on.
Bradshaw's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, made headlines Sunday night when he told Miami 7 Sports Xtra that his client is open to becoming a Miami Dolphin. The Dolphins are in the market for a running back to pair with Daniel Thomas.
"He's training here in Miami and would be very interested in the Dolphins," Rosenhaus said, according the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "If they (the Dolphins) are interested in Ahmad, we're very interested in the Dolphins."
Said Bradshaw: "Hopefully I'm a Giant next year, but if the Dolphins are interested, I gotta look at my options."
The Giants have told Bradshaw that he will be a priority in the offseason. But they already have Brandon Jacobs in the fold and the position, and he's due $4.65 million 2011 and $4.9 million in 2012 -- the final two seasons on his contract.
"It's a process," Bradshaw said of his potential free agency. "All I can do is just stay focused. I just wanted to play football. I love the game. I'm working hard right now, my agent is doing his job and hopefully we can settle something soon."
Bradshaw is currently in Miami doing offseason training. He underwent surgery to clean out his left ankle in mid-February. The Giants held voluntary workouts at Hoboken (N.J.) High School in May, but Bradshaw didn't attend.
"I haven't made it to any of the workouts that they set up," Bradshaw said. "I'm in Miami training, getting back on my after my surgeries. I feel 100 percent."
Bradshaw said he's kept in contact with wide receiver Hakeem Nicks and Jacobs during the lockout, and hopes that the owners and players can reach an accord, which would end the lockout, this week.
"We just wanna play together and have fun," Bradshaw said. "Football is the best sport ever. We're just hoping there's a season this year."
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the NFL's owners could ratify and vote on a new collective bargaining agreement when they meet on Thursday in Atlanta.
"It's a great sign," Bradshaw said. "Hopefully we'll be playing football next year and hopefully free agency and everything goes the right way."
Bradshaw said he's been training alongside former Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress, who will be an unrestricted free agent, and had nothing but positive things to say about him.
"He's a great guy," Bradshaw said. "I think he can come back strong and be a big part of any team he's going to. He made a mistake, and all that matters is he's learned from it."
Bradshaw said he didn't know where Burress was going to play next season, but did say, "He's a guy you don't wanna play against, hopefully he'll be on my team."
However, a reunion between Burress and the Giants is very unlikely.
As far as his own future is concerned, Bradshaw said the Giants are his "first option" in free agency.
But he's keeping his options open.
"It's a business and a process for me not knowing where I'll be," Bradshaw said. "It's a headache, but hopefully like I said I'm a Giant, and if not, I'll have to go to further teams to look for.
"It's a process that I'm going through and it's a stress for me, but I'm just hoping it gets done as quickly as possible and we can move on.
"I love New York more than anything, and I'd love to be here."
Once the lockout is lifted, teams could be given a short window (72 hours) to negotiate with their own free agents before they hit the open market.Mike Mazzeo is a frequent contributor to ESPNNewYork.com. Information from ESPNNewYork.com's Ohm Youngmisuk was used in this report.