By: Eric Thomas
We only had to wait about twenty hours. The Lions picked Reggie Bush today, and he immediately becomes the best Lions’ free agent running back pick up since James Stewart, when the team plucked him out of Jacksonville in 2000.
This immediately looks like a different Lions team. If Bush stays healthy, defenses won’t be able to play ten yards deep on first down. Bush gives the team a grand slam threat on every down, something that they haven’t had since Barry decided not to drive to Saginaw. Jahvid Best was fast, but he wasn’t Reggie Bush.
The people who complain that Bush is a luxury on a team that needs defense missed most of last year. The problem with the team, or at least one of them, was the inability to stay on the field. Linehan’s offense looks different without an effective swing pass or screen. This opens up the playbook and gives Bush the chance to show his skills.
Hat tip to the Lions, they’re addressing need this year. One could argue that they should have done this last year but it’s against the Lion religion to speak ill on a signing day. Give a fist bump to Ndamukong Suh, his restructure announcement came out of nowhere this morning. If the team can add more defense in the draft, you would love to see them sign one of these veteran corners, the Lions would be poised to take advantage of the Bears rebuild.
You can’t predict the future, it could be a disaster. There have been plenty of days that we thought the Lions were poised for success only to find them out of the playoffs again. Mariucci, Martz, maybe even Jeff Garcia comes to mind. The major difference between Reggie Bush and those others I just mentioned is he fits the Lions; they don’t have to shape the team around him. His talents are exactly what the team needs.
When the Lions miss on a free agent, it follows the same pattern. They sign a guy who is way outside their scheme and overpay for him, all in search of the headline splash. The terms of Bush’s deal haven’t been disclosed and they might have overpaid for him, but he fits their scheme like a glove. Don’t stuff a square peg in a round hole just because you want to pour water on our collective enthusiasm.
The haters should take heart because the Lions have their triplets. Where they go from here is anybody’s guess, but it’s likely to be fast. Trying to defend both Reggie Bush and Calvin Johnson is going to be a nightmare and really fun to watch.