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Thursday, July 28, 2011
Reggie Bush era over with Saints

By Pat Yasinskas

The Reggie Bush era in New Orleans is over.

Bush
Bush
Adam Schefter reports Bush has agreed to a two-year contract with the Miami Dolphins, a deal that clears the way for the Saints to trade the player they drafted with the No. 2 overall pick in 2006. We don’t know all the details of what the Saints will receive as compensation yet (Miami defensive back Jonathon Amaya reportedly is part of the deal), but anything they get is better than nothing, which is what they would have received if they simply cut Bush.

Also of significant importance, the Saints don’t have to pay Bush the $11.8 million he was scheduled to make in base salary this season. Throughout the offseason, the Saints implied they would like to keep Bush with a restructured contract. But Bush began throwing out mixed signals about his desires from the moment the team drafted running back Mark Ingram in the first round.

Although some people have called Bush a flat-out bust, I don’t think that’s an accurate portrayal of his time in New Orleans. He never put up the kind of huge numbers that you would expect from a running back drafted so early.

Part of that was due to injuries. Part of that was because Bush just wasn’t big enough to handle 25 carries a game between the tackles.

But it’s unfair to say Bush’s time with the Saints was a waste. He had his moments. He made some game-changing plays and his presence on the field always drew the attention of defenses. He had an impact, but it just wasn’t as big as you’d expect from someone with his draft position.

Now, the Saints will move on. Bush’s departure clears room in what was a very crowded backfield. The Saints have Ingram, Pierre Thomas and Chris Ivory.