NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - No, Reggie Bush is not a necessity. The Saints have far bigger needs and they'll address them.
That doesn't mean the Saints shouldn't at least consider the possibility of signing Bush. More importantly, signing him wouldn't prevent them from pursuing other options. Plus, his skill set would fill a need, just not one in the top three.
The truth is in the tape. If you objectively watched the Saints offense last year, you know something was missing, despite their deceptively high statistical ranking. It's not overly difficult to figure out. For the first time since Sean Payton and Drew Brees arrived, they didn't have an explosive, pass-catching threat out of the backfield. No, Brandin Cooks was not that guy and he never was intended to be. Can we please stop making that ridiculous comparison? They're two different players. The truth is the Saints wanted Travaris Cadet to be that guy. He wasn't.
Not having that type of player proved costly in 2014. I always laugh when I hear the ‘teams trying to take away the deep ball' argument. Really? News flash, teams have been trying to take away the deep ball from the Saints the moment Brees put on a black and gold uniform. The difference was in the past, the Saints could play small ball and still be explosive. Brees could throw a 3-5 yard pass and have it turned into a gain of 25 yards with one simple cut.
Bush and Darren Sproles both provided this at an elite level. Sproles averaged 77 catches per season during his three years in New Orleans. Bush averaged 58 catches over his five years here. And to this day I have yet to see a Saints offensive player command more attention from a defense than Bush.
But here's the rub. Bush is 30, not quite a dinosaur but not young either. And he's battled several injuries throughout his career. Thus, at this point of his football life he should know who he is. He's a situational back with the ability to return punts, not an every-down player who will lead the team in touches. If Bush doesn't realize this, then the Saints should look elsewhere. But if Bush does possess this self-awareness then he fills a niche that the Saints could certainly use.
But like everything in the NFL, price matters. While the Saints' salary cap is nowhere near as dire as many have made it out to be (they can easily go into free agency with $20 million in cap space), they still have to be judicious in the money they spend.
The good news is the role Bush would fill does not command top dollar. So, if the Saints can get him at a bargain price (say 2 year/$3mil), why not take a shot? Or at the very least consider it as an option.