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Reggie Bush: I’m not too small to run between the tackles

Miami Dolphins v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Getty Images

One game into his tenure with the Dolphins, there’s already a lot of hand-wringing about what Reggie Bush’s proper role is in the offense. Is he a glorified receiver? Can he handle 20 touches a game? Is he just not built to be an every-down back?

For his part, Bush says he can’t promise he’ll be good for 20 touches a game, 16 games a year, but he thinks he’s fully capable of doing everything a running back has to do, including running up the middle.

“I really can’t say I have a crystal ball,” Bush said. “I try to make the most of my opportunities whether it’s inside the tackles or outside the tackles. I don’t think you can say that, you know, if you continue to run a guy between the tackles, he’s going to get hurt. You look at Walter Payton, he was only 200 pounds. I’m not saying I’m Walter Payton, but I’m just saying that I don’t have a crystal ball.”

Bush is right: Walter Payton was listed at 5-foot-10 and 200 pounds. Bush is listed at 6 feet tall and 203 pounds. So they’re approximately the same size. But Bush is also right that he’s not Walter Payton.

Bush is talented and can be an important cog in a good offense. But if he’s capable of being an effective, consistent runner between the tackles, he hasn’t shown that so far, and he’s in his sixth NFL season.

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68 Responses to “Reggie Bush: I’m not too small to run between the tackles”
  1. joetoronto says: Sep 17, 2011 8:28 AM

    Please don’t mention Bush in the same sentence as Walter Payton.

    Please.

  2. tireman3749 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:31 AM

    Just what makes that little old ant
    Think he’ll move that rubber tree plant
    Anyone knows an ant, can’t
    Move a rubber tree plant

    But he’s got high hopes, he’s got high hopes
    He’s got high apple pie, in the sky hopes

  3. blackqbwhiterb says: Sep 17, 2011 8:32 AM

    Give him the damn ball!! Darren Sproles does it!! Why not feed it to him 20-25 times and see what he does?

  4. fin72 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:34 AM

    Reggie Bush isn’t even allowed to mention his name in the same PARAGRAPH as Walter Payton for any reason whatsoever. One is known for breaking the all-time rushing rushing record, and the other can barely average 3 yards a carry. One of them NEVER got injured and the other can never stay healthy. And lastly, one was known as nothing but pure class and the other is known for dating a skank and having the Heisman Trophy taken away from him.

  5. steelerfan999 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:34 AM

    thats not what kim said.

  6. dasboat says: Sep 17, 2011 8:37 AM

    Defensive lineman weren’t 350 lbs when Sweetness was running through them.

  7. jw731 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:44 AM

    He’s also may be too small for those “buckets of paint” aka the Kardashian’s…….

  8. jaggedmark says: Sep 17, 2011 8:45 AM

    Reggie Bush: “I’m not too small to run between the tackles. I’m just not good enough”

  9. stubbyjones says: Sep 17, 2011 8:48 AM

    Yes he may be of comparable size but the defenders are now much bigger, much stronger and much faster than back in Mr Payton’s day..

  10. finsfrontofficeisajoke says: Sep 17, 2011 8:52 AM

    Bill Clinton: I did not have sexual relations with that woman.

    Just because you say it doesn’t mean it’s true.

  11. bcgreg says: Sep 17, 2011 8:53 AM

    Yes, you are.

  12. hookset12 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:53 AM

    Here comes the inevitable “But other defenses have to gameplan for Reggie” quote. And it’s just not true these days.

  13. hookset12 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:56 AM

    I love the guy. He helped win a Super Bowl for my Saints but Miami fans will see what I’m talking about. He fumbles 1 out of every 8 times he’s tackled.

  14. ampats says: Sep 17, 2011 9:04 AM

    Like when Albert Haynesworth tackled him with one arm on MNF.

    MDS, my money is on you against the over the hill Mason

  15. vernhh says: Sep 17, 2011 9:08 AM

    Walter Payton was a freak of an athlete that trained at a level that made him as tough as nails and he trained without stop all year round. Defenders used to say that when they collided with Payton it felt like running into a Mack truck.
    I don’t think any defender fears a collision with Bush. He might dance around them but he’s not running over anyone.
    Sorry Reggie but chose a really bad person to compare yourself to.

  16. ftblfan9 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:12 AM

    Danny Woodhead doesn’t seem to have much of a problem.

  17. Reggie's Bush says: Sep 17, 2011 9:14 AM

    That’s what she said

  18. fin72 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:14 AM

    Bush is right: Walter Payton was listed at 5-foot-10 and 200 pounds. Bush is listed at 6 feet tall and 203 pounds. So they’re approximately the same size.
    ___________________________

    And let’s not forget that when Payton played, the linebackers weighed around 215 and now they weigh around 240 and are much faster and stronger than they were back then. Payton was considered very solidly built in his day, wereas Reggie is nothing more than this generation’s Eric Metcalf.

  19. malicegreene says: Sep 17, 2011 9:15 AM

    “But Bush is also right that he’s not Walter Payton.”

    nice cheap shot …

  20. howiefeltersnatch says: Sep 17, 2011 9:20 AM

    You are too small to run between the tackles, you’ve had plenty of time to show us otherwise. And Walter Payton was a football player. You are just a guy that plays football.

  21. finsrule2222 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:22 AM

    lets gooo reggie

  22. broncobeta says: Sep 17, 2011 9:22 AM

    That’s so cute :)

    Ur not too wittle!!!

  23. balzosteel says: Sep 17, 2011 9:29 AM

    I am more impressed with Reggie’s arms in the above photo than I am with his ability to play RB in the NFL.

  24. emperorzero says: Sep 17, 2011 9:29 AM

    Reggie Bush will never be more than a player who would be a nice piece on a championship-type team. If he was a third-down back in Green Bay, New England, Pittsburgh, or back in New Orleans he could shine, but he’s not an every down player and can’t make a big enough difference on an average to below-average team.

  25. raiderlyfe510 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:30 AM

    Reggie Bush is Ricky Watters 2.0 … If he woulda gone to Frisco under Hatbaugh you would have seen the real Reggie Bush.Harbaugh and Roman are great innovators of the running game.

  26. frankdatank23 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:36 AM

    Sure, miami will run him between the tackles some. Those plays will mostly be draw plays, run out of passing formations, where he doesn’t roll out. He’ll have some success doing that and it will keep defenses honest when they do throw the ball from those formations.

  27. jacunn2000 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:36 AM

    You arejust not good enough.

  28. jw731 says: Sep 17, 2011 9:44 AM

    This is like me comparing my net worth to Warren Buffett’s…..

  29. jacksaysfu says: Sep 17, 2011 9:55 AM

    Westbrook can do everything Reggie can , only do it better (esp blocking) . Atleast I get to mock a couple friends who insisted that taking Mario Williams ahead of Bush was a mistake .

  30. FinFan68 says: Sep 17, 2011 10:11 AM

    Whether he can run between the tackles for 20 touches a game is irrelevant. The point is that philosophy is not a smart or effective strategy. Getting him 20+ touches per game is fine as long as his skills are used correctly. Sweeps, stretch plays, swing passes, releases over the middle from the backfield, and an occasional run between the tackles to keep the LBs honest. Get him in the open field and big plays will happen. They don’t need to get cute or run plays to prove a point…just use him effectively and the rest of the offense becomes better as well.

  31. kingjoe1 says: Sep 17, 2011 10:12 AM

    Reggie Bush: I’m not too small to run between the tackles…it’s just that those freaking tackles are just too darn big.

  32. robf2010 says: Sep 17, 2011 10:19 AM

    I don’t know where anyone in Miami got the idea that Reggie Bush never got an opportunity to be THE GUY in New Orleans. He surely did. He wasn’t up to it. Saints got the best of the Dolphins again. Drew Brees, Ricky Williams, Reggie Bush … Detect a pattern here? :)

  33. clownsfan says: Sep 17, 2011 10:19 AM

    Sproles can do it because he’s got heart

  34. phuckosu says: Sep 17, 2011 10:21 AM

    Ok, reggie is a freak athletically, but he absolutely sucks as an NFL RB. It’s not that he is too small to run between the tackles, its because he is a p@#sy! Did u see that weak 1 ARM tackle against the pats with a hole a truck could run through. He is afraid to take hits. Reggie Bush is a worthless punk azz B#$ch

  35. obamasballsack says: Sep 17, 2011 10:22 AM

    Reggie Bush is only about 5’10 1/2. The NFL listed him as 6′. I think he also lost a few pounds, he between about 195-200.

    But please don’t mention him and Walter in the same breath.

  36. cowboyhater says: Sep 17, 2011 10:23 AM

    Hey Reggie, size is an attitude, and you certainly don’t have enough to run for those tough yards. Many undersized backs have been very successful (See Barry Sanders). You are over paid, and over rated, just like all of those so called atheletes coming out of USC.

  37. polegojim says: Sep 17, 2011 10:33 AM

    Many jokers here… but Bush did a MUCH better than expected job of running between the tackles.

    That said, they need a banger in front of him… or he won’t last an entire season doing it.

  38. randallcobb says: Sep 17, 2011 11:00 AM

    Yes you are.

  39. cornersss says: Sep 17, 2011 11:03 AM

    “Reggie Bush: “I’m not too small to run between the tackles. I’m just not good enough””

    Why not learn to quote what people actually say

  40. cowboyhater says: Sep 17, 2011 11:10 AM

    Hey polegojim, I wasn’t joking.

  41. dlmcc1010 says: Sep 17, 2011 11:23 AM

    Its all fun and games until he gets hurt. There is no way he can run between the tackles 20-25 times a game and stay healthy. Ask yourself if you want to really see him doing that against Pittsburgh or Baltimore. If you want 16 games out of him then the answer should be no

  42. cornersss says: Sep 17, 2011 11:27 AM

    besides what the phins are saying ,Daniel Thomas will be pounding the ball. So stop writing pointless stories and whining about something irrelevant

  43. ProDolphinsTalk says: Sep 17, 2011 11:35 AM

    Lay off. The guy has done and said all the right things since he got to Miami. If I recall, he played every offensive snap in our MNF opener and accounted for close to 100 yards and a TD whether he was inside, outside, WHATEVER. HE had an impact in the game and that’s why we brought him here. Never mind that though, let’s just criticize Reggie because God knows EVERY player on your team is Walter Payton 2.0.

  44. mwcarolina says: Sep 17, 2011 11:58 AM

    accounted for close to 100 yards and a TD whether he was inside, outside, WHATEVER.
    ————————————————————–
    he rushed for like 40 yards, that’s not 100, oh you must be talking about total yards. an every down, great running back will rush for at least 80 yards or more in games. NOW, i will give him time because i feel that i have to, but as for the too small line. he’s NOT too small. small backs have been able to run between the tackles, it’s the CAN you do that. so far, not so good for Bush, but he can change that.

  45. backindasaddle says: Sep 17, 2011 11:59 AM

    Danny Woodhead is tiny and runs between the tackles all the time….and with far better results than Reggie Bush.

  46. dilberry says: Sep 17, 2011 12:02 PM

    Whether he can run between the tackles for 20 touches a game is irrelevant. The point is that philosophy is not a smart or effective strategy. Getting him 20+ touches per game is fine as long as his skills are used correctly. Sweeps, stretch plays, swing passes, releases over the middle from the backfield, and an occasional run between the tackles to keep the LBs honest. Get him in the open field and big plays will happen. They don’t need to get cute or run plays to prove a point…just use him effectively and the rest of the offense becomes better as well.

    ———————————————–

    The only comment in this thread worth reading

  47. justentertainingthestupid says: Sep 17, 2011 12:07 PM

    I can’t remember a time when my team was getting this much bad pub after the first game of the year. It’s really comical how this site has something against the Dolphins. You guys WILL be eating a big fat $h!t burger. Extra pickles.

  48. Andre's Johnson says: Sep 17, 2011 12:09 PM

    Well, give it a shot, Reg. Antonio Smith, JJ Watt, Demeco Ryans, and Brian Cushing will be waiting.

    Have fun.

  49. iplaybingowitholdpeopleandwin says: Sep 17, 2011 12:11 PM

    For the past 5 years Reggie’s been doing an on-field audition for Dancing with the Stars. After watching him run backwards and side-to-side with the Saints, that’s probably about all he’s good for now. Darren Sproles is much smaller than Bush but somehow averages more yards per carry. Face it Reggie – you’re not the NFL player you think you are or should be. Do you hear that sound???? It’s your ego hitting the exit.

  50. crawfish2011 says: Sep 17, 2011 12:13 PM

    Reggie Bush doesn’t have that stocky, squaty build like most RBs. He has a big upper body but his lower body isn’t big. He’s built more like a WR than a RB, in which it’s all about leg power.

  51. brealistic says: Sep 17, 2011 12:15 PM

    jaggedmark says: Sep 17, 2011 8:45 AM Reggie Bush: “I’m not too small to run between the tackles. I’m just not good enough.

    you guys crack me up, Bush is in the NFL, and you my friend are on your laptop. Let me see laptop vs NFL. Boy, I rather have bush job. What a TOOL…..

  52. billsfan1 says: Sep 17, 2011 12:40 PM

    Better off comparing Fred Jackson to payton…not the talent of Walter but similar running style…

  53. billsfan1 says: Sep 17, 2011 12:45 PM

    Whether he rushed inside or outsidex he is just not that effective…numbers don’t lie…33 tds in 5 years…those are not difference maker numbers . I’m sorry. He is not awful but he is just another guy in the league..

  54. babyjesus69 says: Sep 17, 2011 12:56 PM

    he’s too small when you’re talking about having testicular fortitude

  55. thagratest says: Sep 17, 2011 1:00 PM

    Never before have i seen so many ignorant and foolish articles on Reggie Bush.
    Bottom Line: Bush has NEVER had the opportunity to run the football since he entered the NFL. Call him a bust, cant do this, cant do that, but the man simply has not had the rushing attempts, period.
    4.2 Rushing attempts his ENTIRE career, if Adrian Peterson or Chris Johnson had those attempts, they would be a bust too.
    You guys make a huge deal out of someone running between the tackles, its nonsense.
    Barry Sanders, Franco Harris just to name a few, ALL ran and bounce runs to the outside. Somehow, a writer said that Bush doesnt run between the tackles and you all leashed on and jumped on the bandwagon.
    Give him the oppty to run the football, at least 15 rushing attempts per game, and you will see results, period, hell my 6 year old niece can see how ineffective a running back is with limited touches, of course you gonna say he cant do this or that

  56. kirschmania says: Sep 17, 2011 1:33 PM

    I knew as soon as Payton was mentioned you idiots would be commenting, completely missing Reggies point. I swear to god, most people that comment on stories have the IQ of a 5 year old. Reggies point is that there have been effective backs in the NFL with his “small” size. He even made a point to say he’s NOT Payton and you idiots still manage to miss the point. I’m just speechless at how dumb you people are. Unbelievable…

  57. d3murf says: Sep 17, 2011 1:57 PM

    I think he’s big enough. He’s bigger than Chris Johnson. CJ has no problem between the tackles. It might be more of a talent thing. I wonder why a coach hasn’t taken him and made him an X Receiver. I’ve seen him make some great catches down field in his career. He also has great feet and runs really nice routes. He can be like Percy Harvin. He’ll break tackles from safeties and corners easier than lineman and linebackers..

  58. promickey says: Sep 17, 2011 2:30 PM

    It does not matter what Reggie Bush or Tony Sparano say about 20 touches. What matters is what actually happens. The modern NFL offense is spreading the field and passing to set up the run. There is an H-back & tight end without a fullback. Who cares if Henne fakes to Reggie, Reggie runs between the tackles without the ball, then into his pass route to catch a ten yard pass.

  59. pancanfinfan says: Sep 17, 2011 2:31 PM

    Danny Woodhead didn’t seem to have a problem doing it.

  60. pancanfinfan says: Sep 17, 2011 2:31 PM

    PS…it would help if the O-line open some friggin holes without holding.

  61. iplaybingowitholdpeopleandwin says: Sep 17, 2011 2:57 PM

    @thagratest – If you look at his first two years in the league, Reggie was used like a typical running back. He then averaged just under 10 rushing attempts per game and put up a meager 3.6 ypc average. In comparison, Barry Sanders averaged 18 rushing attempts and 5.3 averaged ypc. While CJ 17:4.9 and AP 17:5.6.

    When Reggie tried to bounce runs to the outside he was either tackled immediately or danced and then got tackled by other members of the D.

    For me, it boils down to this: You have to perform when the ball’s in your hands to justify getting more touches and Reggie simply didn’t do that when he had the chance. Giving him more touches now certainly won’t do the trick. If anything, it will drive his average further down.

    The only thing that makes sense to me is that he was a bum in New Orleans so that he could force a trade to another team or get released.

  62. saintswillwin says: Sep 17, 2011 3:04 PM

    Did Mario Williams make it to the AFCC game his rookie year?

    Has Mario Williams PLAYED in any playoff games?

    Has Mario Williams WON any playoff games?

    How many Super Bowl rings does Mario Williams have?

  63. backindasaddle says: Sep 17, 2011 4:17 PM

    Reggie is a guy that needs space to be effective. If doesn’t get the ball with room to juke and cut then he’s done. Danny Woodhead is very effective running between the tackles because he has great vision, patience and anticipation picking his holes. I seriously doubt Bush can do that as effectively…..but get him the ball in space and he can be lethal.

  64. liltifer says: Sep 17, 2011 5:12 PM

    So far he’s 0-19. He got the ball 20 times. 0 fumbles. 1 TD.

    Judging by your very factual post, he is now due to fumble on his next 3 carries.

  65. brasho says: Sep 17, 2011 6:46 PM

    brealistic says:
    Sep 17, 2011 12:15 PM
    jaggedmark says: Sep 17, 2011 8:45 AM Reggie Bush: “I’m not too small to run between the tackles. I’m just not good enough.

    you guys crack me up, Bush is in the NFL, and you my friend are on your laptop. Let me see laptop vs NFL. Boy, I rather have bush job. What a TOOL…..

    +++++++++++++

    You like, uh, totally forgot to call us all HATERZ, dude!

    Sorry, brah, Bush is a punk. He gets paid handsomely to be below-average. If not being able to criticize somebody because they do something better than us weren’t allowed, there would be no such things as editorials, blogs, and voices heard at NFL games.

  66. mkuske says: Sep 17, 2011 6:51 PM

    Did Mario Williams get dumped by his team?

  67. 6thsense79 says: Sep 17, 2011 8:03 PM

    raiderlyfe510 says:Sep 17, 2011 9:30 AM

    Reggie Bush is Ricky Watters 2.0 … If he woulda gone to Frisco under Hatbaugh you would have seen the real Reggie Bush.Harbaugh and Roman are great innovators of the running game
    ——————————
    Don’t insult Ricky like that. Watters was 3x the running back Bush is. Watters was a very good player that had 6 straight seasons of rushing over 1000 yards…….All these excuses for Reggie. Poor Reggie. He’s not being used right. Give me a freaking break. Reggie had his chance to be an every down back in New Orleans but he could not run between the tackles. He didn’t know how to read his blocks and consistantly choose the right hole….When he first joined the league he thought he could use his spead to over come his obvious defiencies but the speed of NFL defenders is just a tad faster than what Bush saw in college.

    Pierre Thomas was somehow able to do fairly well running between the tackles in New Orleans. Enough with the excuses.

  68. dathrone says: Sep 19, 2011 3:33 PM

    Don’t see his you can complain about Bush running. He’s a home run hitter which means you have to give him the ball enough to average out the mediocre runs. I don’t know why coaching staff expect different he’s not the back that will grind it out all game. He’s more Lesean McCoy-Jammal Charles then Arian Foster-Ray Rice.

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