During five years in New Orleans, running back Reggie Bush never rushed for more than 581 yards. With one game to go during his first season with the Dolphins, Bush has 1,086 yards.
So what’s next?
“I feel like there’s so much more,” Bush told Jeff Darlington of NFL.com. “This is just the tip of the iceberg.”
Does the iceberg include leading the league in rushing?
“Yes, I do,” Bush said. “No disrespect to anyone, but I’ve spent a lot of time studying different players, including Chris Johnson. I’ve watched a ton of his runs, especially during his 2,000-yard season. And yeah, I feel like I’m capable of a lot, but I’m not worrying about that yet. My mental focus is entirely on this next game. If I wasn’t, my priorities would be backward, and I wouldn’t be setting myself up to accomplish any of this.”
The biggest challenge facing Bush in the short term is that the next coach of the Dolphins may not envision him in the same every-down role that he has filled in 2011. The next coach could implement a multi-headed approach at tailback, putting Bush in the same situation he occupied during his time with the Saints.
Bush is signed through 2012, and he’s due to earn a base salary of $4.5 million next season. Whether he plays next season in Miami will depend in large part on the name of the man whom the Dolphins hire to coach the team.
If Bush stays and if Dolphins continue to use him extensively, there’s no reason to think he won’t have another big year. Thus, the silver lining in his second-tier role with the Saints is that his career could be extended due to the fact that he hasn’t absorbed the same pounding that an every-down back would take.