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lamberts-lost-tooth 04-19-2007 05:56 PM

RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft
By The Associated Press
Thursday, April 19, 2007

Michael Bush is up and running, his broken right leg nearly fully healed just in time for the NFL draft.
The former Louisville running back this week took part in his first full workout since he was hurt in September, and also received a thumbs-up prognosis from James Andrews, an Alabama-based orthopedic surgeon who specializes in sports injuries.

"I reviewed an X-ray today and it looks like it is 99 percent healed," Andrews wrote in a letter dated Wednesday and obtained by The Associated Press. "I would estimate that Michael Bush will pick up in the NFL where he left off in college, and should be a top-ranked running back taken in the 2007 NFL Draft."

The letter was released by Bush's agent, Todd France, who said he is forwarding Andrews' letter, Bush's most recent X-rays and a DVD from his client's workout to all 32 NFL teams. The workout was held at Louisville on Monday and filmed by school officials, France said.

The agent hopes the updated information will clear up any doubts about Bush's status going into the draft on April 28-29.

"It's great news," said France. "It's huge. My thing was I wanted to take away any negative perceptions in people's minds where his health status is because he couldn't work out at the combine. Well, guess what, look at him now."

The highly regarded Bush broke his leg in Louisville's season-opener against Kentucky in September. He was coming off a junior season in which he ran for 1,143 yards and an NCAA-leading 23 touchdowns.

Bush applied for a medical redshirt in case he decided to come back to school, but instead opted to enter the draft.

The injury has led Bush's stock to fall in numerous draft projections, which peg him as a second- or third-round pick at best ? and well behind Oklahoma's Adrian Peterson and California's Marshawn Lynch.

Before being hurt, the 6-foot-1, 251-pound Bush was noted for running with both power and speed, while also being a capable receiver. He actually came to Louisville as a quarterback.

His recovery comes about a month after Bush had a second operation during which a new rod was inserted into his leg after the bone didn't heal quickly enough from the initial surgery.

"It is remarkable how quickly this has improved," Andrews wrote. "It certainly looks much better than it did some weeks ago."

Andrews said he also was impressed after viewing the workout, noting Bush took part in 100-yard runs, multiple ladder drills, jumped rope and did 225-pound squats.

tony hipchest 04-19-2007 06:28 PM

Re: RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft
i read this, and immediately wanted him even more. then i read an updated mock and was pissed when i saw him taken by atlanta in round 3 two picks before us. im not concerned about his bone. i was a little worried about how he was approaching his rehab. it seems hes dedicated, and not gonna get fat and lazy like lendale white. i know we got alot of needs but i would hate to pass on 1st round talent at a money position in the 3rd.

tony hipchest 04-19-2007 07:12 PM

Re: RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft
the comparrisons to jerome are uncanny. and i hate every big back being compared to jerome but in this case i have to think he is the closest in the last 15 years. ive always said the next jerome wont be found in the 2-7th rounds. jerome was a top draft prospect for a reason and thats where bush was headed before he was derailed with his injury.


Positives: For a player of his size, he shows very good foot agility and balance … Takes short, pitter-patter steps and demonstrates the loose hips to change direction and come out of his breaks with an explosive up-field burst … Very crisp planting and driving in his route cuts and has the feel for the crease and vision to locate the cutback lane … Intense competitor who will do whatever the coaches ask if it will help the team … It is very rare to see him run out of bounds with the ball, as he feels he can be more productive sinking his pads and driving with his legs to drag the opponent for extra yardage rather than taking the easy way out … Has that deceptive burst that allows him to surprise a lethargic defender … Does a nice job of changing angles, but can also build up to top speed quickly when operating deep in the backfield … Is not going to run away from defenders in the open just on pure speed, but can change gears, lower his pads and redirect smoothly to get past the second level (39 runs for 10 or more yards in 2005) … Shows patience waiting for holes to develop, but it is his ability to see the cutback lanes that is the result of his long run success … Most big backs tend to get erect in their stance, but Bush is capable of sinking his hips and keeping his pad level low … Because of his patience waiting for blocks to develop, Bush has had good success through the cutback lanes or bouncing outside to get big yardage … Has the loose hips to redirect and is quite nimble in the open for a player of his size … Even though he is a good downhill runner, his lateral bounce is more effectively used running outside … Does a nice job of staying low in his pads and has the smooth stride moving laterally to make the initial tackler miss … Can either juke the defender or slide step to elude … Sets up his cuts nicely when sliding and has the feet to take the ball long distances

Preacher 04-19-2007 09:52 PM

Re: RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft



Did I make that IF clear enough????

If he is back to fully healthy... I say it may be worth trading down in the 2nd round to get him... and picking up a another 3rd round pick.

Heck... Depending on who is on the board, it may be worth trading down a couple of spots in round one for another second round pick... and make sure we get him... as long as it is in the lower half of the 2nd round...


he is healthy.

Livinginthe past 04-20-2007 12:58 AM

Re: RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft
Well thats the thing isn't it - if Bush came with a 100% health guarantee his 1st round talent would make him a 1st round pick - probably even 1st RB off the board.

If you pick Bush you wont get any such guarantees - just the best evaluation from guys who this type of thing for a living.

In my own mind, I don't see Bush lasting to the 3rd.

coachspeak33 04-20-2007 08:25 AM

Re: RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft
I would love to see him in the black and gold.....I am not as concerned with him personally as much as I dont want our offense to be limited to what we currnetly have.... I dont want Najeh to be our No. 2 option at RB....

I dont care what round it happens... but I desperately want the steelers to get a legit weapon to add to the offense... A charles davis-esque TE in round 5 doesnt count.... A fred gibson-like WR in Rd 4 wont cut it either...

No I feel we need to add a guy who at the worst could immediately improve the play of our No. 3 WR, #2 RB, or 3rd down back.

And I better not have to get up Monday morning after the draft and listen to the FO talk about guys in the mold of Cedric Humes and Noah Herron who were 6th rounders.... Day 1 selection please

RoethlisBURGHer 04-20-2007 08:30 AM

Re: RB Bush up and running just in time for NFL draft
I like Bush a lot and would love to select him.

But I think the Falcons will take him before we can.Thier head coach was his coach at Loisville and would love to have him there to take over when Dunn leaves.

I see the Falcons taking two Loisville players...Okoye in the first round and Bush in the second or third (I can see them trading for a nother 2nd rounder if they think a top 5 pick team will take him in the third).

So if we can't get Bush,I am all for Tony Hunt.

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