Reggie Bush excited about his role in the Lions' offense

Posted May 17, 2013

In a media tour Friday that included hits with the NFL Network, ESPN and Sirius NFL Radio, Bush said he sees his role in the Lions' offense to be very similar to what it was in New Orleans

Reggie Bush is the big-play threat the Lions have missed from their backfield since Jahvid Best last played a game in 2011.

The team made Bush one of their primary targets in free agency and when they got him to the dinner table, sold him on how they wanted to use him in their offense.

In a media tour Friday that included hits with the NFL Network, ESPN and Sirius NFL Radio, Bush said he sees his role in the Lions' offense to be very similar to what it was his first five NFL seasons when he was the No. 2 overall-pick of the New Orleans Saints.

"As far as from the offensive perspective, it's a lot like what we did in New Orleans," Bush told the NFL Network.

"It's a lot of spread open passing. Obviously we can attack downfield and with the running game; a lot of screens and draws and stuff like that. Basically everything I did in New Orleans, so learning this offensive system has been pretty easy for me."

In his first three seasons with the Saints, Bush averaged 516 rushing yards, 533 receiving yards and scored 20 total touchdowns.

"I look forward to getting back to this style of offense," Bush said on Sirius NFL Radio. "There's a lot of room for big plays and scoring a lot of points. There's never a dull moment with this offense and the talent that we have."

The last two seasons in Miami, Bush had a slightly different role. He proved he could be an every-down back and carry the load for a running attack.

He had more than 200 carries in both 2011 and 2012 and averaged 1,036 yards per season.

Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said Bush would have more of a multidimensional role with the Lions.

"Last year, when he played for the Miami Dolphins, he was a running back," Schwartz said. "He didn't have very many catches. He had about 20 catches last year. This is a guy who can potentially catch 60-to-70-to-80 balls, depending on how you use him."

Bush averaged 71 catches per season in his first three years with the Saints.

His ability to be a multidimensional weapon was the missing piece for the Lions' offense last year. Now having Bush in that role should force defenses to play the Lions differently.

Matthew Stafford might not see as many two-high safety looks, Calvin Johnson might not see as many exotic coverages and the red zone offense has a chance to be dynamic.

"You have to be honest if you're the defensive coordinator when we get to the red zone," Johnson told earlier this offseason when talking about the addition of Bush. "Teams were able to take me away with two people last year.

"They won't be able to do that anymore because we have such dynamic players in Reggie and then we've got some other young talent that is coming up as well."

For his part, Bush says he can already tell through offseason workouts how much fun it's going to be to have a featured role in Scott Linehan's offense.

"I get a chance to play with the No. 1 receiver in football and a chance to play on a great offense with (Matthew) Stafford and (Brandon) Pettigrew and some of the other guys," he said.

Bush was particularly excited about some of the looks he could see early in the season compliments of No. 81.

"They have to be worried about his presence out there and his ability to take a ball to the house," he said.

"As a running back, you love that. You look forward to the opportunities because you know the defenses are going to be so worried about him. There's going to be so many opportunities in the game for wide-open lanes. It's going to be exciting."