Drew Brees encourages Reggie Bush to stay positive

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After the Saints traded back into the first round of the 2011 draft, giving up their 2012 first-round pick to do so, and landed 2009 Heisman winner Mark Ingram, tailback Reggie Bush presumed the worst.

Quarterback Drew Brees has tried to persuade Reggie to be positive.

Brees tells the Associated Press that he texted Bush words of encouragement not long after Bush posted his “It’s been fun New Orleans” message on Twitter.  “I think that’s just frustration a little bit, just because they draft a guy at your position,” Brees said.  “But I think the message that was sent to him was, ‘By no means look at that as . . . you’re getting shown the door, that we don’t want you,’ or anything like that.”

Brees recalls 2006, when Bush arrived via round one only five years after the Saints had used a first-round pick on Deuce McAllister.  “Deuce handled that situation better than anybody ever could have and he had one of his best seasons in 2006,” Brees said.  “He was a huge part of our success.  I think Reggie has that same potential to be that big a part of our success this year despite the fact that we’ve got three other guys.”

The problem, of course, is compensation.  With those “three other guys” (Ingram, Pierre Thomas, and Chris Ivory) on the roster, it makes no sense to pay $11.8 million to a part-time player.

And here’s the reality.  No one else will pay Bush anything close to that amount.  He’s not, and he never will be, a workhorse.  He’s a niche player, a punt-returner and a pass catcher who’ll from time to time run between the tackles.  His value to any other team will be no greater than it is to the Saints.  In fact, the Saints would probably be willing to pay him more than any other team would offer on the open market.

Bush seemed to acknowledge that reality in January, after the Saints exited the playoffs in Seattle.  “I’m open to whatever is going to help me stay here,” Bush said at the time.  “Obviously, with that said, you have to be fair to yourself.  You have to be fair to whatever the market sets.  I’m not stupid or dumb.  I know that obviously there’s going to have to be some type of restructuring going on here.  With that said, you’ve just got to kind of hash it out as best as you can.  Negotiations, things can go a million different ways.”

Of course, the way things went included the Saints picking Ingram, which gives them extra leverage in their eventual negotiations with Bush.

In the end, we still think the Saints will be willing to pay him more than anyone else would pay him — unless there’s a team that simply wants to the name on the back of the jersey without regard to what the guy wearing it actually brings to the table at this point in his career.

20 responses to “Drew Brees encourages Reggie Bush to stay positive

  1. Frankly, Drew Brees also knows what it’s like to have your team spend a first round pick on a guy who plays your position (the Eli Manning pick that became Philip Rivers).

  2. I’m sorry Reggie Bush fans out there, but he is not worth the money. With or without Ingram, Reggie is due for a huge paycut anyway.

    I wouldn’t call him a bust, but I don’t think he ever boom the way people expected him to.

  3. I don’t see what Reggie’s so upset about. If anything, I think the oft-injured Pierre Thomas is more likely to lose his roster spot. Reggie Bush is a change of pace back from both of them. Pierre Thomas, not so much of a change from Ingram.

  4. They just signed Thomas to a four year deal worth something like 2 or 3 mil a year. I think Ivory has a better chance of losing his job. They’ll keep Reggie, but they’re going to seriously cut his salary. If the season ever starts, it’s gonna start with Ingram, Thomas, Bush, and another guy, maybe Ivory, maybe not. You can never have enough running backs.

  5. um………… Lets see new england gave up a 1st round pick and gave ingram to saints. i think bill had a little trade for a player in mind when the season officially gets going. and i also think the saints will be more then ok to send bush to the team that just gave them the best running back in the draft in the past 5 years. when the season starts reggie bush will be a new england patroit. we are looking for a replacement for faulk and i think we found one.

  6. From OP:
    “And here’s the reality. No one else will pay Bush anything close to that amount. He’s not, and he never will be, a workhorse. He’s a niche player, a punt-returner and a pass catcher who’ll from time to time run between the tackles. ”
    Where were you on this in 2006? My arm’s hurting from patting myself on the back, because this is almost exactly what I said about Bush back then, except I also noted that the things that made him successful in college (reversing field, improvising, etc.) would cause him problems in the NFL.

  7. Well seeing how they just gave Thomas a 4 year deal, i highly doubt they cut him..As for Bush, they said they wanted his deal reworked, so i dont really understand what all the fuss is about. He was either gonna take less money or get cut..Old news

  8. liltifer says:
    May 8, 2011 7:52 AM
    I don’t see what Reggie’s so upset about. If anything, I think the oft-injured Pierre Thomas is more likely to lose his roster spot. Reggie Bush is a change of pace back from both of them. Pierre Thomas, not so much of a change from Ingram.

    PT just signed 4 year deal and has been hurt less than Bush. Reggie hasnt played a full season since he arrived in the NFL but i hope we do keep him. 1yr deal valued at 2 million is fair compensation. He should be happy with the money he’s received because his contract far out performed him.

  9. Reggie Bush has always been a better receiver than a running back. His build is similar to that of Devery Henderson’s and he’s still super fast, so why not make him into a wideout? The Saints will need an update at WR anyway.

  10. The Saints need all four running backs, but Bush definitely will have to take a pay cut if he wants to stay. I would give him $2 million per year, plus incentives.

  11. Reggie needs to keep putting his CA dates on NY yachts, it’ll make him feel more important.

  12. I’m positive that nobody wants him at that kind of money. It’s amazing what’s happened to the top three picks 5 years ago. Vince has worn out his welcome in Tennessee after going 35-17, Bush has done little in New Orleans other than just being on a Super Bowl team and losing his heisman, and Williams has been moved to LB after a couple of good years with a new defensive coordinator.

    Looks like all three didn’t pan out as expected.

  13. Funny that they mention Deuce McAllister who also was “prematurely drafted” when they still had Ricky Williams on the roster. These players need to realize this is the Not For Long show. Your star can rise and fall as quick as anything. Just be happy about the millions you’ve made (or stole), the Super Bowl and National Championships, and Kim Kardashian. Without football you’d have none of it.

  14. At this point I think he actually has much, much more value to other teams. The Saints like quick hitting plays. Dives up the middle and quick passes. A versatile pass catching playmaker type guy really doesn’t have a ton of opportunities there.

    He’d be better off on a one dimensional offense that needs to add another dimension. With the Saints they are simply better off with a more powerful runner because the passing game is fine with Brees and the WR’s.

  15. This young man is A) Worth about $3.5 mil a year B) As described above, an excellent STs return ace C) IMO, a perfect fit for a WCO team.

    Guys like Bush can make a great living doing what he does. WCO teams are always looking for Pass Catchers out of the backfield & guys that can split out wide, + run the occational draw, pitch, wildcat, etc.

    With Hardesty’s long term health in question & Hillis definitely needing more than an occational break, Bush would make a nice option for the Browns, now moving to the WCO. Just another weapon that McCoy could use in his arsenal.
    Little, MoMass, Robo, Watson, Moore, Cameron, Hillis, Marecic, & Bush… Sounds nice to me!

  16. What a baby. He should QUIETLY use the new rookie as motivation to work harder. Now he sounds just like that other diva baby, Favre, when Rodgers was drafted after the Favre was on his 4th annual retirement debate.

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