Reggie Bush RB 6' 200 USC Jr.
By: Robert Davis
Very few players can impact a stat book in as many ways as Reggie Bush can. Whether he's lined up as a back, a wideout, or on special teams, he's the one guy you always have to keep an eye on. As a true sophomore in 2004, he ran for 908 yards on 143 carries, with 6 touchdowns. He added another 509 yards on 43 catches, with 7 of those being taken in for touchdowns. As a punt returner, Bush averaged 15.7 yards per return, and he took two of those to the house. On kick off returns, he averaged 25.6 yards per return on the year. Reggie even added a 52 yard touchdown pass on the year. On the entire year, Bush totalled 2,330 all purpose yards and 16 touchdowns. Even though he didn't have one true standout category, his impact on the game was so large that he was invited to New York as a Heisman finalist, though he ended up finishing 5th on the ballot. He was also named Co Pac10 Offensive Player of the Year along with teammate Matt Leinart, his name was found on many all american lists, and Bush was actually voted team MVP ahead of Leinart by his teammates. All that was just the beginning. This season, Bush ran for 1,658 yards and 15 touchdowns on the ground, while averaging an amazing 8.7 yards per carry. As a receiver, he caught 37 passes for 478 yards and two more scores. His all around big play ability got him another invite to New York. This time, Reggie won the award in one of the biggest runaways in Heisman history.
Reggie Bush is as explosive a player as you will ever find. Every single time he touches the ball, he is a threat to take it the distance. His quickness, acceleration, and top end speed are all special. As a running back, he hits the hole quickly with his initial burst, and if any crack is there, look out. Even though most of his runs are designed to the perimeter to take advantage of his big play ability, he does run the ball inside, and Bush has shown the ability to plug it in between the tackles. He's tough, can take a hit, and will lower his shoulder. He will not be confused with a power runner, but he can run it inside. His receiving ability out of the backfield is truly special. There aren't many backs that can catch the ball as well as he does. His hands are as good as any wide receivers in the draft. And of course, we haven't even gotten to special teams yet. As a punt or kick returner, Bush is electrifying and a major threat. Off the field, his attitude and work ethic are second to none.
One thing Reggie has to prove is that he can handle being the workhorse. Playing at USC alongside LenDale White, he hasn't gotten the opportunity to run the ball as much as he probably would elsewhere. So he just has not had the opportunity to showcase his ability to run the ball 20 times a game on a consistent basis. Tipping the scales at just over 200lbs, it is a valid question if he can handle the rock as a feature running back.
Reggie is the best player in the draft, period. He is a gamebreaker, and someone you cannot pass on. The Texans would be smart to choose Bush with the first pick, and that seems to be the most likely scenario. Players with his ability do not come around very often, and he has a chance to be one of the games greatest talents.
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