Colts Backs in Ballard and Robinson are ‘Bulldog Brothers’
The Indianapolis Colts offseason competition in their backfield will feature two running backs, who are quite familiar with each other in Vick Ballard and Josh Robinson.
Both played at Mississippi State for one season in 2011, where Ballard was a senior standout for the Bulldogs, while Robinson was a redshirted freshman. Still, despite being relegated to the sidelines, Robinson has always looked up to Ballard as a mentor from his early Mississippi State days:
"“Vick Ballard taught me everything I know,” Robinson said via Kevin Bowen of Colts.com.“He taught me never to give up. I always give a relentless effort,” added Robinson. He just gave me the mindset to be the best I can be and just be ‘J-Rob’ at all times. I always translated that and that made me the player I am today.”"
His Bulldog predecessor in Ballard could see that despite being overweight as a redshirted freshman, Robinson flashed tremendous potential with his no nonsense, hard-running style:
"“(Robinson) came in overweight but he ran hard,” Ballard said of 2011 fall training camp with the Bulldogs.“At the time, he was out of shape but you could still see the flashes. We had three other running backs but I really wasn’t worried about them. I was a senior, but I was like, ‘I’ve got to make sure this little freshman doesn’t take my spot.’ I saw potential in him when he was young. He was always a hard worker.”"
It’s funny how things work out sometimes. The Colts clearly found success with Ballard in the 5th round of the 2012 NFL Draft and decided to go to the Mississippi State running back well once more. Only this time, the team was able to pluck Robinson in the 6th round of this year’s NFL Draft.
Despite having an impressive rookie season in which he rushed for 814 rushing yards in 2012, Ballard knows he’s “the forgotten running back” after two consecutive season ending injuries. While he was once the mentor to Robinson, his apprentice could very well be his primary competition on the depth chart, if not for a roster spot.
Both running backs will compete with two holdovers in Dan “Boom” Herron and Zurlon Tipton for the spots immediately behind starter Frank Gore in the Colts backfield. Whatever happens, the connection between these two ‘Bulldog Brothers’ appears lasting.
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