Ahmad Bradshaw & Chris Canty released

Posted Feb 6, 2013

The Giants have released RB Ahmad Bradshaw and DT Chris Canty

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The Giants are clearly going to have a new look in 2013. Today, they announced the release of running back Ahmad Bradshaw and defensive tackle Chris Canty, bringing to three the number of veterans they have let go this week.

Yesterday, they parted ways with linebacker Michael Boley.

Bradshaw, who turns 27 next month, has spent his entire six-year career with the Giants. He is sixth on the franchise’s career rushing list with 4,232 yards. Bradshaw is seventh in Giants history with 921 rushing attempts. He rushed for 32 touchdowns, the ninth-highest total in team history. In his six seasons, he played in 84 regular-season games with 33 starts.

In addition to his rushing prowess, Bradshaw caught 132 passes for 1,087 yards and three touchdowns. He is one of six players in Giants history with 3,000 rushing yards and 100 receptions, as well as 3,000 rushing yards and 1,000 receiving yards.

“Pound for pound, Bradshaw is one of the toughest football players that I’ve been around,” general manager Jerry Reese said. “Ahmad played football like Giants football should be played.”

“Ahmad Bradshaw was drafted 250th in a class of 255 and to excel and to perform the way that he has, and to accomplish what he has, is a great tribute to him,” coach Tom Coughlin said. “He is not only an exceptional football player, but he is the epitome of line up and play. Regardless of the circumstances, he’s going to give you everything he’s got. If you give the ball to him, he’s going to get every inch of what is there – and sometimes when it’s not blocked, he still gets it.”

In 2012, Bradshaw led the Giants with 1,015 yards, the second-highest total of his career, despite missing games at Carolina with a neck injury and Atlanta with a sprained knee. His 4.6 yards-per-carry matched his career average and he scored six touchdowns. Bradshaw had career-high totals of 200 yards on 30 carries in a victory over Cleveland on Oct. 7.

Bradshaw, who joined the Giants as a seventh-round draft choice in 2007, was a significant contributor to the Giants teams that won Super Bowls XLII and XLVI. A year ago, Bradshaw scored the game-winning touchdown in Super Bowl XLVI on his now-famous turnaround sit down 6-yard run with 57 seconds remaining in the victory over the New England Patriots. He was the game’s leading rusher with 72 yards on 17 carries.

But it was a far less publicized moment from Super Bowl XLII that Coughlin recalled today.

“Ahmad Bradshaw has been an incredible part of two world championship teams here,” Coughlin said. “(The second-quarter) play is going to be one of the least-talked about plays in his much-talked about and revered years here as a New York Giant. It could be the biggest play in the Super Bowl XLII win. This guy goes down in a pile and takes the ball away from a Patriot player who has it in his hands. It was an incredible play. The guy has the ball and Bradshaw goes down and gets the ball and it’s our ball. Rather than losing the ball to Tom Brady and that high-scoring offensive team, he saves the day with that play. Just an incredible football play.”

Bradshaw is second in Giants postseason history in rushing yards (480) and third in attempts (111). His postseason average of 4.32 yards is a team record.

In recent seasons, Bradshaw has suffered from foot and ankle injuries that have required surgery and severely curtailed his availability for practice. Foot problems forced him to miss four games in 2011.

“Bradshaw has great toughness,” Coughlin said. “He plays through anything. He doesn’t just talk about playing hurt. He does play hurt. If anyone knows the quality of this man’s pain threshold, all you need to do is watch him on a Monday when he can’t even walk. He gets a little better on Tuesday, a little better on Wednesday. By Thursday his spirits are back up and whether he can or he can’t, he’s telling you he’s practicing on Friday, and he does. And he plays on Sunday. And he goes through the same cycle. He did that for two or three years.”

Without Bradshaw, the Giants’ top returning running backs will be Andre Brown and David Wilson. Brown rushed for 385 yards and a team-high eight touchdowns before suffering a fractured fibula vs. Green Bay on Nov. 25. Wilson, the Giants’ first-round draft choice in 2012, rushed for 358 yards and four scores and also set a franchise record with 1,533 kickoff return yards.

Canty, 30, was part of the Giants’ 2009 free agency class that also included Boley. In four years with the Giants, Canty played in 49 regular-season games with 45 starts. His totals included 155 tackles (101 solo) and 9.0 sacks. Canty started all 20 regular-season and postseason games in the Giants’ 2011 championship season.

“Chris Canty is a pro’s pro, a true team player and competitor,” Reese said. “He helped us get to the top in 2011 and it was a pleasure having him here during his time with the New York Giants.”

“Chris Canty is a high-character, highly intelligent young man,” Coughlin said. “He distinguished himself a year ago down the stretch for a number of reasons. One, the quality of his play, and two, is the toughness he displayed, which was a great statement about the quality of the individual.”

Soon after Super Bowl XLVI, Canty underwent knee surgery. He was placed on the reserve/physically unable to perform list at the start of training camp last year and missed the first six games of the regular season. He made his 2012 debut in a victory over Washington on Oct. 21. Canty started all nine games in which he played and finished the season with 31 tackles (24 solo) and 3.0 sacks.

Canty did not play in the season finale against Philadelphia with a knee injury suffered the previous week in Baltimore. He was limited to eight games in his Giants debut season in 2009 because of hamstring, calf and knee injuries.

Canty spent his first four NFL seasons with the Dallas Cowboys, who selected him on the fourth round of the 2005 draft, from Virginia.

The Giants’ current defensive tackles include Linval Joseph, who started all but one game the previous two seasons; Marvin Austin, who played in eight games in his first NFL season in 2012; and Markus Kuhn, last year’s seventh-round draft choice, who tore his ACL at Cincinnati on Nov. 11. Rocky Bernard, who also joined the Giants as a free agent in 2009, is a free agent.

*The Giants also waived defensive tackle Martin Parker, who spent the entire 2012 season on injured reserve with a back injury.

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