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Bush Runs the Wildcat in Practice – and Likes It

Reggie Bush enjoyed running a simulation of Miami’s wildcat offense in practice this week—and said he even broke out a few long runs with it.

But don’t expect the New Orleans Saints to change what’s led to their 5-0 start this season.

That’s because head coach Sean Payton is unlikely to limit prolific quarterback Drew Brees’ involvement in his offense.

Even Bush, one of the Saints’ most explosive and versatile running backs, saw no reason to do so, despite the fun he had with the formation. Bush received extensive work on the scout team as the Saints prepare to play Sunday against the Dolphins, the team that runs the wildcat more consistently and effectively than any other.

“I think our offense is OK,” Bush said, grinning at his understatement regarding an offense that led the NFL last season and ranks No. 1 so far this year. “I don’t think we need to try to fix anything.”

In the wildcat formation, a running back takes a direct shotgun snap and has the option of running, handing off or even throwing, although passes are not as common. Payton spoke at length about the formation this week, discussing how it effectively helps the offense gain a blocker because there is no traditional quarterback on the field.

Bush said he rarely worked on the scout team in 2008 but was eager to take the extra work in practice this week.

“We wanted to give our defense the best look, if not try to make it harder so that they’re prepared for what they’re going to see,” Bush said. “The Dolphins run the wildcat very well.”

Knowing they would have to play Miami this season, and suspecting that more teams might give the formation a try, the Saints have been practicing defending against the wildcat since offseason workouts started last spring, defensive coordinator Gregg Williams said after Thursday’s practice.

“We’re trying not to get caught off guard, so every single week, every single practice schedule since I’ve been here, we’ve had a version of the wildcat,” Williams said. “Are we good enough? We’ll see.”

Bush said he didn’t see his success running out of the formation as a reason for the Saints to be alarmed at how they might do against Ronnie Brown —or former Saint Ricky Williams, who often takes the handoff from Brown.

“You want to break (big runs) now as opposed to during the game so they can see what we need to clean up,” Bush said.

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One Response to “Bush Runs the Wildcat in Practice – and Likes It”

  1. RC says:

    I’m tired of hearing how good Reggie Bush is, how explosive he is, yada yada yada. Reggie is still all show and no go. Every time I watch the Saints play and they call his number I hold my breath and pray he doesn’t screw up. Reggie still doesn’t hit the line and run through it. He still has to stop and dance until he sees an opening… if he sees one. He gives the defense as much time as they need to locate him, get their hands on him and drag him down. The Saints offense is stellar, he needs to trust his offensive line is going to open a lane for him to run in, Reggie justs needs to blow through the line and RUN through it, but as usual he’ll dance and wait for the hole to close up on him. Then there’s the fact that he doesn’t like to take a hit. Instead of lowering his shoulders and bulling into a defender for another yard or two, he’ll stand up and dance to try to make the defender miss him or just fall down. If Reggie could stop all his dancing and just bust straight into the gap with full force, lower his shoulders and run over defenders instead of dancing with them he just might do something… but he can’t, he has the highlight reel to think of. Hey Reggie! Try actually playing football like a real man, hold onto the ball, and post some decent yards per carry by running instead of dancing… I bet you’ll still make the highlight reel.

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