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Saints' Reggie Bush gets new shot to clear bad impressions

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; By Gary Mihoces, USA TODAY METAIRIE, La. Reggie Bush has heard the criticism that he hasn't lived up to expectations as the No. 2 pick in the 2006 draft. He has labored through knee problems that sidelined him for ...

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Old 02-01-2010, 08:43 AM   #1
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By Gary Mihoces, USA TODAY
METAIRIE, La. Reggie Bush has heard the criticism that he hasn't lived up to expectations as the No. 2 pick in the 2006 draft. He has labored through knee problems that sidelined him for 10 games in 2007-2008.
But this postseason with the New Orleans Saints, he has scored three touchdowns: one rushing, one receiving and one on a punt return. The big stage of Super Bowl XLIV is a chance for him to wipe away past perceptions.

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"I don't want to put it all into one basket because I'm still young. I have a long career ahead of me," says Bush. "I can make my presence felt not only in this game but across the league a little bit. But the most important thing is just to focus on being effective and giving my team a chance at the second (down)-and-shorts, third-and-shorts giving us good field position on a punt return."

When Bush met the news media last week, he was asked about the enormity of this Super Bowl with the Indianapolis Colts and whether it was potentially an "overwhelming" experience for a Super Bowl first-timer.

But this is Reggie Bush, the 2005 Heisman Trophy winner who played in several huge games at Southern Cal, including the BCS championship vs. Texas.

"I don't know about everybody else in the locker room, but I'm not going to be overwhelmed," says Bush. "I know I haven't been in the Super Bowl before, and I know it's a different level. But you know what? I've played in big games before."

Saints coach Sean Payton echoes that. "You could draw some comparisons to a college national championship game in regards to the (Super Bowl)," he says. " A number of these guys with the bigger (college) programs have been in the pressures of games like this, and in the playoffs."

Bush, who'll line up at running back or as a receiver, missed two games this season with knee issues. He didn't accumulate huge numbers, rushing for 390 yards and five TDs. He caught 47 passes for 335 yards and three TDs. But he made some plays that reminded many of his college days.

Against the Miami Dolphins, Bush took a handoff on a double reverse and leaped the last six yards to the end zone, flying over a defender and extending the ball with one hand to the pylon.

In a playoff win vs. the Arizona Cardinals, Bush carried five times for 84 yards and a 46-yard TD and returned a punt 83 yards for a TD. Bush returned three punts for TDs in the 2008 regular season, and none this regular season.

But the Colts are wary.

"He's outstanding," says Colts coach Jim Caldwell. "He's one of the best in the business. A guy that is very, very dangerous."

Pierre Thomas (793 yards rushing in regular season) and Mike Bell (654 yards) carry the brunt of the rushing load for New Orleans. Wideouts Marques Colston and Devery Henderson lead in receiving. Bush is a contributor in both facets and a punt returner. Does he have a favorite role?

"Just having the ball in my hands, just making plays, scoring touchdowns," he says.

His celebrity girlfriend, Kim Kardashian, plans to be at the Super Bowl. "Reggie deserves this, the team deserves this and the town of New Orleans deserves this!" she blogged last week.

Says Bush: "It's our first (time) to make it to the Super Bowl, and now we've got to finish it off."

Saints' Reggie Bush gets new shot to clear bad impressions - USATODAY.com

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Old 02-01-2010, 08:52 AM   #2
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Re: Saints' Reggie Bush gets new shot to clear bad impressions

Big time players step up in big time games....... The Super Bowl is the largest stage in the World.

Good time to erase any "over rated" labels.
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