Payton sends strong message to Bush

January, 24, 2010
1/24/10
8:19
PM ET
NEW ORLEANS -- Very interesting turn of events at the end of the first half. Reggie Bush seemed to be headed for goat duty after he fumbled a punt return and gave the Vikings great field position.

But Brett Favre and Adrian Peterson let him off the hook by botching a handoff near the goal line. The Vikings lost the ball and New Orleans linebacker Scott Fujita recovered.

What happened next might have seemed insignificant at the time as the Saints ran out the clock with two running plays. But I think those plays were highly significant because coach Sean Payton called for Bush to carry both times.

I think that was Payton’s way of sending a message to Bush. Payton was telling Bush he still has his confidence. I think that could mean a lot in the second half. Had Payton not done that, Bush could have gone into a funk and been a non-factor the rest of the game.

I think Bush will be a big factor in the second half.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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