Reggie Bush OUT, Daniel Thomas to Start for Dolphins

By Bill Daulton

Reggie Bush had a career year in 2011 for the Miami Dolphins.  However, his year will be cut short by one game due to a knee injury.  Bush will miss the Dolphins season finale against the Jets on Sunday, but his knee injury is not thought to be serious.  Bush finishes 2011 with 216 carries for for 1,086 yards and 6 TDs.  He also added 296 yards receiving and 1 TD.  Bush seemed to get better as the season wore on, raising is yards per carry average to 5.0…an impressive number.

Reggie started 15 games this season, second most since his rookie year.  He showed that he can be an every down back, that many thought he was too frail for.  While his knee injury is a concern at this time, he’s expected to be fully healthy for 2012.

Daniel Thomas, the Dolphins rookie 2nd round pick, will make the start on Sunday.  Thomas has rushed 153 times for 553 yards (3.6 ypc).  Thomas showed flashes early, but it was evident that he took the back seat to Bush as the season went on.  Through his first 2 games Thomas had over 200 yards.  Injuries and the lack of a full offseason have clearly slowed the rookie’s progress, but he has shown flashes of potential.  With a full offseason this year, he should only get better.  The Dolphins look to have a potent 1-2 punch in the backfield moving forward with Bush and Thomas.

Thomas should get a bulk of the carries against the Jets with Lex Hilliard filling in when Thomas needs a breather.  I’d expect to see Lex in on 3rd down or obvious passing situations, as Thomas struggled at times this season in pass protection.  Hopefully, Thomas can pick up solid gains on 1st and 2nd downs, which will create more manageable 3rd down opportunities.  I’m anxious to see how the rookie responds to his first shot at getting a bulk of the carries for the Dolphins offense.

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