Ahmad Bradshaw: Potential Fantasy Football Replacements for Injured Giants RB

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistSeptember 19, 2012

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 05:  running back Ahmad Bradshaw #44 of the New York Giants scores a touchdown in the third quarter past free safety Gerald Sensabaugh #43 of the Dallas Cowboys during the 2012 NFL season opener at MetLife Stadium on September 5, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

Owners of Ahmad Bradshaw are in a tough spot. The New York Giants running back's status remains up in the air, and the Giants play on Thursday this week, forcing a quick decision about what to do at the position in Week 3.

Even if he does make a quick recovery, he would be a risky play because it would be impossible to know exactly how much he'll play. In other words, owners are better off looking for a replacement to fill Bradshaw's spot for at least one week.

Let's take a look at a couple of waiver-wire options that would be good pickups, capable of filling in until Bradshaw is back to full strength.


Andre Brown

Even though David Wilson received a lot of hype leading up to the season, it was Brown who received the vast majority of the carries after Bradshaw went down. He led the Giants in rushing with 71 yards on 13 carries and a touchdown.

It was the type of performance that should ensure he gets a lot of touches against a shaky Carolina Panthers defense on Thursday night. The Panthers have allowed opposing fantasy RBs to score 51 points in the first two weeks.

Brown can also make plays in the passing game, giving him a little extra value in PPR leagues. If owners drafted Wilson as a handcuff for Bradshaw, switching to Brown would be a wise move.


Dexter McCluster

McCluster has eligibility at both running back and wide receiver in most leagues, giving him flexibility that increases his value. The Kansas City Chiefs use him as a WR, where he's caught 10 passes for 114 yards so far.

What makes McCluster so intriguing this week is the favorable matchup. The Chiefs face the New Orleans Saints, which means Kansas City will likely be playing from behind and therefore get forced to throw a lot against a lackluster Saints secondary.

That makes McCluster, who has the potential to break a couple of big plays, a high-upside play in Week 3. Consistency has been an issue, but he should have no shortage of opportunities.


Mikel Leshoure

After serving a two-game suspension, Leshoure is expected to return on Sunday. ESPN reports the Detroit Lions are likely to get him heavily involved in the offense right off the bat, a sign his conditioning is already up to par.

Lions starter Kevin Smith has a history of injury problems, which means Leshoure has good long-term value to go along with being a potential replacement for Bradshaw. The team has spoken highly of the Illinois product since taking him in the second round last year.

With the injury and suspension concerns finally behind him, Leshoure should finally start showing off his ability this week. Owners should add him now because he'll likely be off the market before next week.