Reggie Bush

NFC Notes: Beckham, Rams, Pierre-Paul

Lots has been written about Giants All-Pro wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and his contract. Beckham has stayed away from the team this offseason as he angles for a longterm deal. He’s also still rehabbing from a devastating ankle injury that cost him most of the 2017 season, but expects to be fully cleared soon.

The ankle may have something to do with why the Giants have been slow to engage Beckham in extension talks, writes Ralph Vacchiano of SNY. Vacchiano thinks the Giants want Beckham to prove he’s fully healthy and capable of being the same explosive player he was before the injury before they commit to him longterm, writing in regards to his ankle “yes, that is one of the reasons contract negotiations haven’t really gotten going.”

Vacchiano thinks it “would be crazy to give Beckham the kind of money he wants – perhaps $20 million per year, perhaps as much as $60 million guaranteed and $100 million total – without being absolutely sure he’s fully healthy and the same player.” It will be interesting to see if the Giants do indeed play hardball with Beckham, and Beckham’s situation will surely be one of the biggest stories in the league this summer.

Here’s more from around the NFC:

  • Jason Pierre-Paul didn’t show up for a single OTA practice, according to Jenna Laine of ESPNBuccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter said it wasn’t a huge deal that Pierre-Paul didn’t show up, but it’s certainly not ideal for a team that traded two draft picks to acquire the defensive end. Laine did report that Pierre-Paul is expected to be with the team for their mandatory minicamp.
  • The Rams are the only remaining defendant in Reggie Bush‘s lawsuit after the city of St. Louis was dismissed from the case, according to Joel Currier of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Bush is claiming the Rams are responsible for slippery concrete that caused him to suffer a season-ending knee injury when he was with the 49ers.
  • In case you missed it, it appears that David Johnson and the Cardinals may soon iron out an extension for the star running back.

RB Reggie Bush Intends To Retire

It sounds like Reggie Bush‘s career has come to an end. The veteran running back told NFL Total Access that he is planning to retire. Bush had said back in September that he’d call it quits if he wasn’t signed to a deal during the 2017 season.

Reggie Bush (vertical)“I’m done,” Bush said (via Edward Lewis of NFL.com). “Yeah, I’m done. I said it. It’s not breaking news. I’ve been saying it. I said it all season long, I said, ‘Listen, if I don’t play this year, I’m going to retire.’ Because I’m not going to spend a whole year off, come back, 33 years old, trying to get back in the league. Listen, once you get to a certain age as a running back, they just start to slowly weed you out.”

There wasn’t much interest in the 32-year-old following a subpar 2016 campaign with the Bills, when he compiled negative yards and a touchdown on 12 carries (as well as another seven receptions for 90 yards). Of course, those struggles shouldn’t take away from Bush’s impressive 11-year career. While the 2006 second-overall pick and 2005 Heisman Trophy winner (the award was later forfeited) didn’t necessarily live up to the hype, he was still one of the most respected pass-catching backs in the league.

Bush compiled at least 30 receptions and 200 receiving yards during each of his first eight years in the league, including four seasons with at least 50 catches. The offensive weapon was also a dynamic returner, as he finished his career with four punt returns for touchdowns. The USC product spent time with the Saints, Dolphins, Lions, 49ers, and Bills, and he’s widely regarded as one of the top NCAA running backs of all time.

It’s worth noting that Bush didn’t officially announce his retirement, as the running back indicated that he’d still consider a gig from a playoff team (primarily New Orleans). However, he believes it’s unlikely any teams reach out.

“Listen, the Saints know I’m coming home at some point,” Bush said. “I’m going to come home to retire as a Saint. But yeah, man, I’m done. For sure. I’m done.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Reggie Bush To Retire If Not Signed In 2017

Longtime NFL running back Reggie Bush will retire if he isn’t signed during the 2017 season, as he tells TMZ Sports. Bush is still working out in the hopes of landing a deal, but he hasn’t generated any known interest at this point.Reggie Bush (vertical)

Going into year 12, I still feel like I have a lot left to prove, a lot left to give this game before I’m done,” Bush said earlier this year when indicating his desire to continue his career. “I don’t want to put a number on how many years I have left. I think once you get past year 10, you just gotta take it one year at a time and go from there. I’m still excited, still looking forward to playing football again this season, still staying in shape, still working out.”

Bush, 32, appeared in 13 games for the Bills last season but didn’t post much in the way of results. On 12 carries, Bush actually finished with negative three yards but still scored a touchdown, and also added seven receptions for 90 yards. He also chipped in on special teams, returning 13 punts and three kickoffs.

If this is it for Bush, the former second overall pick will have finished his 11-year NFL career with 5,490 yards rushing, 3,598 yards receiving, and 54 total offensive touchdowns. Bush, who’s spent time with the Saints, Dolphins, Lions, 49ers, and Bills, was also a dynamic returner for much of his career (four punt returns for touchdowns, including three in 2008 alone).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Reggie Bush Still Wants To Play

Reggie Bush isn’t done yet. At least, he hopes he isn’t. The former No. 2 overall pick says that he intends to play in 2017. 

That’s my plan,” Bush said (via NFL.com). “Going into year 12, I still feel like I have a lot left to prove, a lot left to give this game before I’m done. I don’t want to put a number on how many years I have left. I think once you get past year 10, you just gotta take it one year at a time and go from there. I’m still excited, still looking forward to playing football again this season, still staying in shape, still working out. I plan to be somewhere in September.”

Bush, 32, appeared in 13 games for the Bills last year, but he didn’t do a whole lot. He finished out the season with seven catches for 90 yards plus 12 carries for negative three yards and one rushing touchdown. Bush doesn’t have anyone beating down his door after that performance, but he says that he has “spoken to a few teams.”

For what it’s worth, Bush understands that he won’t be receiving the kind of lucrative offers that he was getting as a free agent prior to the 2013 season.

I think it depends. If you’re in it for the money, then it’s possible,” Bush said. “But I started playing football when I was eight years old, and it’s always been a strong passion, and it’s always been a passion that’s never gonna leave. For me at this point, I’ve made plenty of money and it’s not about the money for me. I want to get a chance to go out there on the football field and just continue to play the sport that I love to play. I’m so passionate about football and I love it, and I’m not ready to hang it up yet. I want to make sure I exhaust everything before I hang it up so I don’t have any regrets once I do hang it up.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

East Notes: Bush, Watkins, Jets, Dez

Upcoming roster decisions involving Marcell Dareus and Seantrel Henderson could put Reggie Bush‘s status with the Bills in jeopardy, Mike Rodak of ESPN.com writes. Bush has three carries for minus-4 yards and did not play in the Bills’ 33-18 win over the Cardinals.

Buffalo handed the former No. 2 overall pick and Heisman Trophy winner a $375K signing bonus despite signing him late in the offseason but has given Mike Gillislee the backup job behind LeSean McCoy. Last week, fifth-round rookie Jonathan Williams saw action ahead of Bush as well.

Rex Ryan hinted that Bush had a role as a slot receiver set for last week but the team never got to it. The 31-year-old Bush also has not seen action on special teams to this point despite an extensive history as a punt returner.

Here’s more from the Eastern divisions.

  • Sammy Watkins has not sustained any further damage to his foot, structurally speaking, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com reports (video link). It will continue to be about pain tolerance for the Bills’ talented wide receiver, per Garafolo. Watkins suffered the foot fracture in May and hasn’t been effective this season, by his standards. The former top-five pick has six receptions for 63 yards through two games.
  • Jets No. 4 wide receiver Jalin Marshall suffered a torn labrum in his shoulder during Sunday’s loss to the Chiefs, Todd Bowles said (via Connor Hughes of NJ.com). The 21-year-old made the Jets as a UDFA out of Ohio State. Hughes notes the team is not ready to put Marshall on IR yet but adds the Jets could be looking to add a wide receiver soon since Eric Decker is also battling an injured shoulder. Brandon Marshall practiced fully today but was questionable for Week 3 after suffering a knee injury against the Bills.
  • Rich Cimini of ESPN.com was surprised that the Jets claimed Austin Seferian-Jenkins off waivers. Late last week, the tight end was arrested and charged with DUI, leading to being waived by Tampa Bay. The Jets have been taking a conservative approach toward players with character issues under the new regime, but the ASJ acquisition is a clear departure from that mindset. On the other hand, none of his $677K salary is guaranteed for this season, making this a low-risk move from a fiscal standpoint.
  • While Watkins’ issues may well stem from pain management, Dez Bryant isn’t as fortunate at this juncture. The Cowboys‘ top wideout has a hairline fracture in his knee, but instead of a two-to-three-week timetable previously reported, Bryant’s injury could keep him out more than a month, per Dr. David Chao (via Sirius XM Radio, on Twitter). Bryant missed seven games last season due to a broken foot.

Zach Links contributed to this report.

Latest On Karlos Williams, Bills

After waiving him earlier today, the Bills “fully expect” another club to land running back Karlos Williams, according to Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News (Twitter link). Because he’s not a vested veteran, Williams will be placed on waivers, meaning every team — beginning with the Titans and continuing in reverse order of the 2015 standings — will have the opportunity to claim him and his contract. If Williams goes unclaimed, he’ll become a free agent.Karlos WIlliams (Vertical)

[RELATED: Marcell Dareus To Enter Rehab]

Buffalo’s decision to cut Williams doesn’t have anything to do with his talent, per Carucci, who adds the Bills had simply “soured” on Williams’ attitude problems. As we heard earlier today, Williams weighed 261 pounds at one point during this offseason, up from his 2015 playing weight of 229, a gain Williams had attributed to his wife’s pregnancy. And after losing some of that weight, Williams had once again began to balloon, tweets Carucci, leading Buffalo to believe that he was “not serious about football.”

Meanwhile, the newly-signed Reggie Bush is in line to be the Bills’ No. 2 running back behind LeSean McCoy, and had been considered the top backup even before Williams was waived, according to Mike Rodak of ESPN.com (Twitter links). Bush will also serve as the club’s primary punt returner, and received the opening kickoff in today’s preseason contest against the Giants.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Sign Reggie Bush

SATURDAY, 9:45am: According to ESPN.com’s Mike Rodak (on Twitter), Bush’s one-year deal includes a $1MM base salary, a $375K signing bonus, and a $125K roster bonus. Overall, the veteran’s salary cap number will be worth $1.5MM.

MONDAY, 3:43pm: The Bills have officially signed running back Reggie Bush. The pact is a one-year deal laden with incentives, a source tells Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). The deal should be worth up to $3MM, Vic Carucci of The Buffalo News tweets.Reggie Bush (vertical)

[RELATED: Q&A With Bills Beat Writer Vic Carucci]

The Bills are in need of depth behind starter LeSean McCoy after Karlos Williams was hit with a four-game suspension for a violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. Fifth-round pick Jonathan Williams is also likely to be hit with a suspension after a DUI arrest. Bills coaches view Bush as an experienced vet with a similar running style to McCoy, which should allow him to hit the ground running in Buffalo.

Bush announced in February that he was intent on playing in 2016, though it was unclear at the time whether that feeling was being reciprocated back from any of the league’s 32 teams. Now, he has found his new NFL home.

Last year, Bush signed with the 49ers, but he played just five games before tearing his left ACL on the concrete at the Edwards Jones Dome in St. Louis. After finishing the year with a grand total of 28 yards, Bush says he has recovered from his injury and is ready for action.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Notes: Bush, Hopkins, Taylor, Raiders

New Bills signee Reggie Bush isn’t committing to playing beyond 2016, as Jason Cole of Bleacher Report (video link) reported — prior to Bush agreeing to terms — that the veteran running back wanted to play at least one more season to “round out” his career. Bush, 31, waited to find a new club because he wanted to make sure his ACL injury, suffered when he slipped on the concrete at the Edward Jones Dome last year, was fully healed, per Cole. And while Buffalo has seen its running back depth chart depleted by off-the-field drama, Bush figures to act mainly as a returner, although he could see some work in package plays alongside LeSean McCoy, tweets Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News.

Here’s more from the AFC:

  • DeAndre Hopkins ended his holdout after a single day over the weekend, and speaking to reporters today, the Texans explained the goal of his decision. “I wasn’t trying to send a message or anything like that,” Hopkins said, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. “I was doing what I felt was best for me and my family.” Hopkins will earn under $1.5MM during the upcoming season, but reports yesterday indicated Houston was willing to discuss his contract. Owner Bob McNair echoed that sentiment today, telling reporters the club would “deal with [Hopkins’] contract at the proper time,” although Wilson adds that the Texans remain against negotiating this year.
  • The Broncos aren’t expected to welcome defensive tackle Phil Taylor back to the club in 2017 after placing him on injured reserve yesterday, according to Troy Renck of Denver7 (Twitter link). In fact, Taylor might be off Denver’s roster in the very near future, as Mike Klis of 9NEWS reports that Taylor’s MRI came back positive — as such, Taylor could be released off IR with an injury settlement. Taylor, a former first-round pick, was signed by the Broncos in February after spending last season out of the NFL while dealing with knee injuries.
  • Elsewhere in the AFC West, the Raiders will field as many as four new starters on their revamped defense, and that number could include two rookies — defensive lineman Jihad Ward and safety Karl Joseph — says Cole in a separate video. Just this morning, scouting guru Dave-Te Thomas analyzed Oakland’s rookie class, noting that Joseph has the ability to line up against tight ends and a nose for the ball, while adding that undrafted free agent defensive lineman Darius Latham (Indiana) could also play a role.

Latest On Reggie Bush, Bills

While one report last week indicated the Reggie Bush could be waiting for a club’s backfield to suffer an injury before determining where to sign, a source tells Jason Cole of Bleacher Report (Twitter link) that if Bush decides to continue his career, it will be with the Bills. Bush has been engaged in ongoing negotiations with Buffalo, and his decision on whether to ink a deal could come this week, per Cole.Reggie Bush (vertical)

[RELATED: The Beat — Q&A with Bills beat writer Vic Carucci]

The Bills are said to be “working out the deal points” of a contact with Bush, while other reports have stated that the two sides have significant obstacles to overcome in order to reach a deal. If signed, Bush would add depth to a backfield that has seen each of its top options — LeSean McCoy, Karlos Williams, and Jonathan Williams — involved in varying levels of off-the-field drama over the past several months. Karlos Williams is already facing a four-game suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy, while Jonathan Williams could be looking at his own ban after being arrested for DUI.

Bush announced in February that he was intent on playing in 2016, though it was unclear at the time whether that feeling was being reciprocated back from any of the league’s 32 teams. Recently, the veteran indicated that there was at least a pair of clubs that would be interested in having him aboard. Thanks to the Bills’ unfortunate series of events in recent weeks, it seems that Buffalo is his most fervent suitor.

The Lions cut Bush prior to the 2015 season to save money after he missed much of the previous campaign with ankle injuries. Bush went on to sign with the 49ers, but he played just five games before tearing his left ACL on the concrete at the Edwards Jones Dome in St. Louis.Bush later sued the St. Louis Regional Convention and Stadium Authority over his injury, which capped his season’s statline at a grand total of 28 yards. Now, Bush says he has recovered from his ACL tear and is ready for action.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Rumors: Taylor, Gilmore, Bush

The Bills and quarterback Tyrod Taylor‘s agent, Adisa Bakari, are talking “relatively frequently” about a long-term contract and could reach an agreement before the season, perhaps within the next month, reports Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News. It’s a “unique negotiation,” a source told Carucci, because Taylor doesn’t have a long track record of success.

Tyrod Taylor

Previously a backup with the Ravens, who chose him in the sixth round of the 2011 draft, Taylor joined the Bills last offseason on a cheap contract. He then proceeded to beat out EJ Manuel and Matt Cassel for the No. 1 job over the summer and post strong numbers as a passer and rusher in 14 regular-season games. Taylor (27 next week) ended up top seven among NFL QBs in yards per attempt (7.99) and passer rating (99.4) in 2015. He also completed 63.7 of his throws and accounted for 24 touchdowns (20 passing, four rushing) against a meager six interceptions. Further, Taylor paced all signal-callers in yards per carry (5.5) and trailed only MVP Cam Newton in rushing yards (568). Taylor could now be seeking Brock Osweiler-type money ($18MM per year), writes Carucci, which would be an enormous raise over the $3.1MM he’s scheduled to collect this season.

Elsewhere on the roster, Buffalo and contract-year cornerback Stephon Gilmore continue to make no progress toward an extension, according to Carucci. Gilmore, who’s due $11.082MM in his fifth-year option season, reportedly wanted a deal in the neighborhood of the Redskins’ Josh Norman (five years, $75MM) as of earlier this month. Norman is currently among the league’s top two corners in average annual value ($15MM, first), total guarantees ($50MM, first) and guaranteed money at signing ($36.5MM, second).

With the salary cap consistently on the rise, Gilmore has a case to approach Norman’s deal – especially given that he’s three years younger. And while the ex-South Carolina standout has missed 11 games since 2013, he has nonetheless been a stalwart for Buffalo. The 10th overall selection in his draft class, Gilmore has logged 53 appearances, 51 starts and nine interceptions since entering the NFL. Three of those INTs came last season in 12 games for Gilmore, whom Pro Football Focus (subscription required) ranked a tremendous ninth among 111 qualifying corners (Norman finished 11th).

If the Bills and Gilmore aren’t able to reach an agreement between now and next March, the franchise tag could be in play, notes Carucci, who doesn’t rule out an in-season extension. The tag would likely cost the Bills upward of $14MM to apply.

Taylor, Gilmore and the rest of the Bills could soon have a new teammate in running back Reggie Bush, whom the club has been in talks with as it seeks a replacement for suspended reserve Karlos Williams. While that dialogue has continued, Bush is mulling whether to jump on Buffalo’s offer or wait for another team’s backfield depth to take a hit this summer, per Carucci. Thanks to Williams’ four-game absence, not securing Bush would leave the Bills with 2015 success story Mike Gillislee and Dan Herron as their primary options behind star LeSean McCoy.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.