NOTEBOOK: Reggie Bush has hard time getting started, Stafford sets mark and more

Posted Nov 17, 2013

Sunday's performance at Pittsburgh was probably the most inconsistent performance Bush has had since joining the Lions

Reggie Bush gained 20 yards the first two times he touched the ball in Pittsburgh on Sunday.

Reggie BushRB Reggie Bush (Photo: G.Smith/Detroit Lions)

The next 12 times he touched it, Bush totaled 34 yards, including a fumble.

It was probably the most inconsistent performance Bush has had since joining the Lions.

Quarterback Matthew Stafford and receiver Calvin Johnson did their part with 362 passing yards and 179 receiving yards, respectively. Bush had just 54 total yards.

“Reggie didn’t have an easy time getting started today,” head coach Jim Schwartz said. “I think that had a lot to do with our inability to get points in the second half.”

Backup Joique Bell was actually the more efficient runner in the rainy conditions at Heinz Field. He totaled 97 all-purpose yards (49 rushing) for a 5.4 average before leaving with an ankle injury.

Bush said after the game that guys can't sit back and hope that Stafford and Johnson can do it all. In the same breath he said he needed to do more.

Bush seemed to have a tough time keeping his feet when cutting between running lanes and his fumble in the second quarter led to a Steelers field goal.

Bush has been good all season for the Lions, but Sunday wasn’t one of his better days.


Stafford entered the game 68 yards shy of breaking the franchise record for passing yards set by Hall of Famer Bobby Layne.

A 79-yard scoring strike from Stafford to Calvin Johnson made him the franchise's all-time leading passer.

He finished the game 19-of-46 for 362 yards with two touchdowns, giving him a total of 16,005 yards for his career.


The Lions lost safety Glover Quin to an ankle injury in the second half and he did not return to the game.

Quin has been dealing with the injury for most of the year, but it’s never prevented him from completing a game.

Asked after the game if Quin’s injury was long-term, Schwartz said it was too early to tell.

Bell, on the other hand, was available to return with that ankle injury, according to Schwartz.


Lions punter Sam Martin could have opted out of the fake field goal call in the third quarter, but liked the look he saw.

“Yeah I think it was a good call,” Martin said. “It was open, that d-tackle made a hell of a play. Got to give him credit.”

Martin was stopped short of the first down on fourth-and-five and fumbled the ball on contact. Instead of taking a 30-23 lead by kicking the field goal, the Lions turned the ball over leading 27-23 and the Steelers scored the next 14 points to win the game.

“Well, I got hit by a 350-pound man,” Martin said of what happened on the play. “I don’t think I had the first down, but regardless that guy made a great play.

“It was a good call. When you look at initially there was a huge hole and that guy came from the backside and just made a good play.”


Ziggy Ansah had quite the audience for his pre-game workout to test that sore left ankle.

Both strength and conditioning coaches Ted Rath and Jason Arapoff were watching. As were defensive line coaches Jim Washburn and Kris Kocurek, along with general manager Martin Mayhew.

The rookie defensive end tested the explosion out of the stance and his ability to leverage and push off opponents.  

“He was close but he wasn’t able to go today so we went with the other guys,” Schwartz said.


Sunday marked the fourth consecutive game a single rusher has failed to gain 50-yards on the Lions defense. Le'Veon Bell had 36 yards on 18 carries.