Lions land free agents Bush, Quin, Jones
Reggie Bush has watched film of the Detroit Lions, and he has
seen the opposing safeties playing deep and paying extra attention
to Calvin Johnson.
”It’s a running back’s dream,” Bush said. ”We have to be able
to run the ball in that situation. One of the reasons I wanted to
come here is to be able to bring a balanced attack.”
Bush was introduced Wednesday, part of a big day for the Lions,
who also landed free agents Glover Quin and Jason Jones and
retained Chris Houston.
Those moves should help the defense, and the Lions are hoping
Bush can give a boost to an offense that already includes Johnson
and quarterback Matthew Stafford.
The Lions did not disclose financial terms of Bush’s four-year
contract, but it is reportedly worth around $16 million. Detroit
also agreed to deals with Quin, a safety, Jones, a defensive end,
and Houston, a cornerback.
Bush certainly adds more speed to Detroit’s backfield, which
already includes 233-pound running back Mikel Leshoure. Bush rushed
for 986 yards for Miami last season after a 1,086-yard output for
the Dolphins in 2011.
Detroit went 4-12 in 2012 despite Johnson’s record-setting
season at wide receiver. The running game was never all that
consistent – the Lions had only four runs of 20 or more yards,
which tied them for the fewest in the league.
”The thing that was important to us was not just the talent of
Reggie Bush, but also the way those talents complemented the other
players we have on offense,” coach Jim Schwartz said. ”That was
really the basis of our interest in Reggie.”
Detroit lacked a big-play running back because Jahvid Best, a
first-round draft pick in 2010, didn’t play at all last season. His
future is in doubt because of concussion problems.
Bush was a change-of-pace and third-down back in his five years
with New Orleans before being traded to Miami following the 2011
lockout. Detroit is still building around Stafford and Johnson, and
Bush is looking forward to fitting in.
”Having a quarterback like Matthew makes all the difference,”
Bush said. ”This offense doesn’t work without him.”
Stafford said he helped recruit Bush during Detroit’s push to
”It’s clear to me he is all about winning,” Stafford said.
”Football is about match-ups and this gives our offense some
tremendous options. It’s exciting for me personally and it’s
exciting for our entire team. Reggie is a proven commodity. He has
made plays at every level of his career.”
The Lions have other needs besides running back, of course.
Jones, who is from the Detroit area, played 12 games with the
Seattle Seahawks last season. He was not a starter, but the
6-foot-5, 276-pound Jones could play a bigger role with the Lions,
who released veteran defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch last
”No words to describe how excited I am to come back,” said
Jones, who is from Southfield.
Jones signed a three-year deal. Quin’s is five years.
Houston started 42 games for the Lions over the last three
seasons. Prior to that, he played his first three years with the
Atlanta Falcons. He had five interceptions in 2011, when Detroit
made the playoffs.
Houston missed two games last season because of a sprained left
ankle, but that was in September. He started every game the rest of
the way, finishing with two interceptions and two forced
Quin has played four years for the Houston Texans. He started 16
games in each of the last three seasons.
”In this league, it’s all about if you can play on Sundays,”
Quin said. ”Obviously, being healthy … and not missing games,
obviously that plays a part in a team’s decision.”