2013 NFL Free Agency: Lions Serious About Adding Reggie Bush?
The Detroit Lions had a tough 2012 season. Much more was expected from this team after overachieving in 2011. Many thought head coach Jim Schwartz lost control of the team mid-season and just couldn’t quite get back on track. Others have even gone so far as to blame the “Madden Curse;” with Calvin Johnson appearing on the game cover. Whatever makes you feel better man….and Johnson had a monster year, so I debunk the last theory.
It’s no secret that the Lions’ offense is based around QB Matthew Stafford and WR Calvin Johnson. Both are premiere players in the league. However, a great passing game needs to have at least a decent running game to be effective. Now, I’m not saying that RB Mikel LeShoure was ineffective last year. I am going to say that he was inconsistent, however. The RB position in Detroit needs to be solidified. LeShoure stands to be the only real true threat Detroit has at RB with Jahvid Best’s career up in the air. And considering Leshoure isn’t the most explosive back in the world, it’s not crazy to think Detroit will look to add some speed to their back-field.
Lately, rumors are swirling about Detroit’s interest in RB Reggie Bush.
These two, in my opinion, make perfect sense for each other. First, Bush would add a change-of-pace dynamic to an already explosive offense. LeShoure was semi-successful running the ball but was limited out of the backfield. LeShoure had 34 receptions for 214 yards last season. Bush had 35 receptions for 292 yards with the Dolphins. Now you’ll ask so why bring this up? Well, Bush was with the Dolphins. He WAS the offense. Bush is tremendous in open space and with Detroit spreading defenses out with their passing game Bush would presumably have more open space than he’s ever seen. The addition of Bush would make a defense have to respect the RB position much more, especially on third down, making double coverage harder to do for the opposition.
If anything, the one word that makes all of this make sense is “insurance.” Detroit could do somewhat of a timeshare with these two guys; which is beneficial in a multitude of ways. Also, if one goes down, you have a guy that can assume a majority workload either way. You are at least covering yourself for the worst case scenario.
Lastly, Bush at 27 years of age, is still valuable. He’s got some gas left in the tank. He’s had some wear and tear but has been pretty durable. At this point, it’s likely that Bush could come at a bargain. He might demand roughly $4 – $5 million per year. Not bad for what you could potentially get out of him over the next 3-4 years.
If this does go down, I think Bush’s upside is tremendous in Detroit. Even in a true timeshare I would consider him a solid RB2; especially in a PPR league. Bush would thrive out of the backfield in Detroit and with Calvin Johnson drawing double teams, he’d be a dangerous weapon as a receiver, as well.
As for LeShoure, his touches would likely drop but redzone opportunities could spike. If the offense is more potent and efficient, LeShoure could benefit being the bigger back and getting more TD attempts. I’d project LeShoure at a low RB2 to solid Flex play.