Colts Post-Draft Positional Review: Running Back
By Evan Reller
2012 Stats: 814 yards, 2 TDs; 17 receptions, 152 yards, 1 TD
PFF Grade: -1.6
DYAR: 24th DVOA: 13th (among backs with less than 100 carries)
Ballard hasn’t seen the field since the season opener in 2013. He played just one game (13 carries for 63 yards) before tearing his ACL in a non-contact drill during practice. This prompted perhaps the biggest overreaction in sports as Ryan Grigson opted to trade a first round pick for Richardson, thus dooming the run game for the next two seasons.
He would once again fall to injury, this time in training camp and once again in a non-contact drill. Ballard tore his Achilles this time, but is making progress in his recovery and expects to be back for camp.
Ballard seemed like a capable back in his rookie season, and meshed well with Luck. He had a few very good games late in the season and appeared to be a piece that the team could build on in the future.
While it might be an unfortunate set of circumstances, Ballard could be the odd man out simply due to his injury history. Even if the team ends up cutting him, I’d expect him to be signed to the practice squad and kept on the shelf in case of injury to another back.
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