CBSSports Vick Ballard was one of the more surprising rookie running backs last year, rushing for 814 yards and helping Andrew Luck keep the Colts offense balanced enough to earn a playoff spot. That won’t happen this season. Colts coach Chuck Pagano said Friday that Ballard had a suffered an ACL tear at practice Thursday after he planted his foot on the ground and his knee simply gave out. Ballard was the team’s starting running back ahead of former Giants starter Ahmad Bradshaw and Donald Brown, so it appears as though Ballard’s carries will transfer over to that duo. After Thursday’s practice, the team injury report listed Ballard as having a knee injury and that he was limited in the workout. Against the Raiders in Week 1, Ballard rushed for 63 yards on 13 carries and played on 71 percent of the team’s offensive snaps. Bradshaw, meanwhile, carried the ball seven times for 26 yards and played just 27 percent of the time. Brown took just one snap on offense and didn’t have a carry.
The loss of Vick Ballard is a big one for the Indianapolis Colts, he was arguably the most productive player on the Colts struggling offense during their week one home win over the Raiders, and things only get tougher with the Miami Dolphins coning to town this weekend. Ahmad Bradshaw fantasy owners will get a lot more value from him, but with Bradshaw’s injury history, taking a flyer on Donald Brown could turn out to be a wide move. I am still from the camp that the Colts overachieved in 2012, and expected them to regress this season, and losing a player like Ballard surely won’t help them prove me wrong.
FYI – I had Vick Ballard in two high stakes fantasy football leagues, I dropped him and took a flier on newly signed Giants running back Brandon Jacobs, who was a free agent in both leagues.