Miami, FL. Lets’ face it, most NFL fans would say that Reggie Bush has been a bust as a professional football player. They would also probably say that he hasn’t lived up to expectations after winning the Heisman Trophy, and his five years as a Saint were very underwhelming. When Houston chose to pass on Bush in the 2006 NFL draft, and he dropped into the hands of New Orleans at pick #2, the Texans ended up making the right call. Very few educated football fans would argue with any of these statements, as Reggie Bush truly has not been as good or as electrifying of a player as most people thought he would be after a sensational college career at USC. But now with the Miami Dolphins, and in his second year there, Bush is reinventing himself to a certain degree. Now the undisputed lead back for the Dolphins, he is putting up some serious numbers, and it may be just the beginning of what he will accomplish in 2012.
Back in 2006, the overwhelming fan favorite to be the top pick was Reggie Bush. How could you blame most people at the time? Bush had just won the Heisman Trophy, and had a combination of speed, cutting ability, and moves that made countless fans jaws drop. He was a rare talent coming out of college, and when the Texans decided to go with Mario Williams instead, most Houston fans were up in arms. As time went on, and some years passed, it gradually appeared as if Houston made the right call. Williams was getting better and better, and became a force on Houston’s defensive line. He became so good, that Buffalo signed him to one of the richest deals in NFL history this past offseason. When Reggie Bush landed in New Orleans, fans there were thoroughly excited to see what he could do on the artificial surface in the Superdome. His rookie year was very good, where he showed flashes of brilliance, racking up 1,302 yards from scrimmage. The following year, his numbers went down, as he totaled 998 yards from scrimmage. The next three years in New Orleans would then begin to get rough, as injuries hit, and his production went south. His style of running also didn’t seem to be conducive to being successful in the NFL, as his dancing in the backfield got him into a lot of trouble. After the 2010 season, New Orleans had seen enough, and decided to go in another direction. They traded Reggie Bush to the Miami Dolphins in July of 2011, getting very little in return. The former Heisman Trophy winner was dealt for a backup safety. This had to have been a shocking turn of events for Bush, who may have gotten the wakeup call that he needed.
Heading into 2011, Reggie Bush and his career in the NFL was in doubt. He was simply at a point of just making sure he would make the final roster for the Miami Dolphins. Miami had drafted a running back out of Kansas State named Daniel Thomas. Most critics and fans thought that Thomas would soon be the main man in the Dolphins backfield, as he had shown to be a strong, physical runner in college. Even before last season began, Thomas had some leg injuries, which then opened the door for everyone else, including Reggie Bush. Once Bush got his chance as the starting running back, he never let go. He would go on to show a new style of running, while not shying away from running between the tackles. He would end up the 2011 season with 1,382 yards from scrimmage, and scoring 7 TD’s. It was his best season as a pro, and made everyone take notice as to the tremendous year he had. Did he still have his critics, and folks who said and continue to say that he can’t continue this level of production? Absolutely. So what has he done just two weeks into the 2012 season? Through these first two games, Reggie Bush has amassed 312 yards from scrimmage while scoring 2 TD’s. Was last year a fluke? Maybe…..Maybe, in that he may be even better this year.
Reggie Bush may never win over the fans who thought he would become an instant NFL sensation back in 2006. To be fair, he did disappoint, as he probably thought he could just show up as a pro and gain 1,000 yards in his sleep. But as time has gone on, Bush has probably learned a few things about the NFL, and how to be a real pro. It sure seems like he has now figured things out, and his seventh year could end up being the best one of his career. Will he help the Miami Dolphins surprise everyone and be a contender in the AFC East? Too early to tell, but Reggie Bush may now be turning into the talented running back everyone thought they were going to see six years ago.
Denver Sports by J Simp