Saturday, July 30, 2011
Brees: Sproles, Bush 'same guy'
By Pat Yasinskas
In reality, the New Orleans Saints traded Reggie Bush to the Miami Dolphins for a compensation package that we aren’t fully aware of yet. In theory, the Saints traded the running back straight up for Darren Sproles.
He’s the running back/return man the Saints agreed to a contract with just hours after agreeing to the Bush deal.
“You look at Reggie’s athleticism and the match-up problems that he provided for us. Sproles is that same guy,’’ quarterback Drew Brees said Friday. “I would say that Sproles’ experience, he has been in the league for six years, he’s been a part of some very good football teams in San Diego, he’s played in some clutch games and come up with some clutch plays in those games. Here is a guy who has been there and done that and is in the prime of his career. I think he maybe even adds an element that we haven’t had.’’
Brees knows more than a little about Sproles. Brees’ final season with the Chargers was Sproles' rookie season. They trained together in San Diego this offseason. As the Saints began their pursuit of Sproles, Brees was enlisted as a recruiter. He called and texted the running back several times and the message was clear.
“We need you baby, come join us, you’ll fit in great, win a championship, lets break some records, let’s do something special, let’s go,’’ Brees said he told Sproles. “I pulled out all the stops. I think that what we have built here, our organization, is a culture that guys want to be a part of.’’
A lot of players don’t like to compare one guy to the next. But Brees was happy to compare Sproles to Bush.
“When you look at those (two) guys’ skills, I think they are very similar in a lot of ways,’’ Brees said. “As I look at our offense and the way that we would plug him in, we will plug him in the exact same way we would Reggie and even be able to do more things.’’