Adding Ahmad Bradshaw's name to list

The Arizona Cardinals should be watching closely as Ahmad Bradshaw and other running backs hit the market for various reasons this offseason.

They could use a boost at the position.

Bradshaw's release from the New York Giants one year after the team dumped another running back, Brandon Jacobs, came as little surprise Wednesday.

NFC West vs. Ahmad Bradshaw

The ratio of salary to production to injury risk made Bradshaw's release appear likely.

Jacobs, waived by the San Francisco 49ers recently after a disappointing (for both parties) season with the team, ranks 18th in rushing yards since 2007. Bradshaw ranks 19th.

Both were valuable contributors to the Giants at various times, but they are running backs, not quarterbacks, and NFL teams know they can find cheaper, healthier replacements. David Wilson is the cheaper replacement for the Giants.

We'll be monitoring available running backs in the NFC West this offseason. Arizona could be in the market for one pending the potential release of 2009 first-round choice Beanie Wells. Steven Jackson's situation in St. Louis is also of interest. He can opt out of his contract if the Rams decide to keep him at $7 million salary.

Bradshaw is a good running back. I think he could help the Cardinals in particular, but his history of foot injuries could be problematic. Arizona's current backs, Wells and Ryan Williams, have had injury troubles recently. Both finished last season on injured reserve.

Bradshaw is coming off surgery.

"He's still one of the most complete running backs in the league -- a power back with good vision who's as good at blitz pickup as anyone in the NFL," Dan Graziano wrote on the NFC East blog. "The concern is that his feet can't stay healthy, and his latest surgery is going to keep him out for the next couple of months."