ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) - Reggie Bush has picked up many honors and accolades throughout his football career.
However, he’s looking to avoid a dubious distinction with one game remaining.
The veteran Buffalo Bills running back has a chance of becoming the first non-quarterback since the AFL-NFL merger to finish a season with negative rushing yards (with a minimum of 10 carries).
Bush has minus-3 yards on 12 carries.
According to Pro Football Reference, Bush could become the first non-quarterback to finish the season with negative yardage on double-digit carries since John Adams in 1961.
“Yeah, that’s tough,” Bush said. “I just didn’t have a lot of opportunities this year. So I’m not worried about that … if I had more opportunities, it would be a lot different story.”
The Bills added the veteran on Aug. 1 to bolster their depth in the backfield, but he’s been given few opportunities on the field with LeSean McCoy playing well.
McCoy has been Buffalo’s most valuable player this season, leading the way for the league’s best rushing offense. The Bills lead the NFL in rushing with 2,562 yards on 464 attempts (5.5 yard average); McCoy is fourth in the NFL with 1,257 yards rushing and has 13 touchdowns.
Bills interim coach Anthony Lynn said that McCoy’s standout play is the biggest reason for Bush’s limited touches.
“Reggie Bush and LeSean McCoy have similar skillsets and right now I’m just not going to take LeSean McCoy off the field for anybody,” Lynn said. “I would love to get (Reggie) a couple carries. … Reggie works hard and he’s made a lot of yards over his career. It’s just been poor timing.”
Bush had 5 yards for the season prior to a big loss in Saturday’s overtime defeat to the Miami Dolphins.
In the extra period, Bush was stopped for an 8-yard loss on a reverse. The play dropped the Bills back to the Dolphins 27-yard line, and two plays later Dan Carpenter missed a 45-yard field goal.
“I know that play is outhouse or castle and it just happened to be outhouse,” Lynn said.
Bush, 31, feels he has plenty more to give in the NFL and is not ready to retire. He topped the 1,000-yard mark with the Detroit Lions in 2013, but his numbers have dropped off significantly since then; Bush had 297 rushing yards in 2014 and 28 rushing yards in 2015.
“I’m definitely not done playing,” Bush said. “I definitely still want to play. I still feel like I have a lot left to give. If I feel like I lost a step or if I couldn’t be me or if I just couldn’t play the game the same way, I would shut it down.
“I never want to be one of those old veterans trying to hold onto something that’s not there anymore. I know it’s there, a lot of my teammates have seen it first hand on the field and they know it’s there. It’s just now for me it’s going to be about the right fit.”
Until then, he wouldn’t mind a couple of carries on Sunday against the New York Jets for the chance to end the season on a positive note.
“If they call my number I’ll be ready,” Bush said. “That’s always been my mentality.”
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