Lions running back Reggie Bush saw his playing time reduced on Sunday after a fumble against the Steelers. But coach Jim Schwartz says he did not bench Bush for fumbling.
Despite Bush himself saying after the game that he thought his fumble was the reason he was benched, Schwartz said today that Bush’s benching “had nothing to do with” the fumble. Instead, Schwartz said it was all about playing the running back whose style is best suited for the wet, rainy conditions in Pittsburgh, and that’s Joique Bell. Schwartz said Bush does his best work when he can cut on a dime on a good surface, and that on a wet day he’d rather have a straight-ahead runner like Bell carry the load in the running game.
Getting the ball to Bell seemed to be the right move for the Lions, as Bell had 49 yards on nine carries, while Bush had just 31 yards on 12 carries. Now the Lions are preparing for two games back inside at Ford Field, against the Buccaneers on Sunday and then against the Packers on Thanksgiving. If they lose either of those games, their status as NFC North frontrunners will take a big hit, and if they lose both of those games, their season will be on the verge of collapse. The Lions need Bush to show what he can do on that fast track.