The 2009 New Orleans Saints Backfield

Alex RodriguezCorrespondent IMay 20, 2009

NEW ORLEANS - DECEMBER 07:  Pierre Thomas #23 and Reggie Bush #25 of the New Orleans Saints celebrate after defeating the Atlanta Falcons 29-25 on December 7, 2008 at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

In 2008, the Saints' offensive air attack was the best in the League. There is no doubt the Saints offense can score being ranked No. 1 and no doubt the defensive coordinators in the NFL worked their game plan on stopping Drew Brees and theย  receiving corps of the Saints.

The one part of the offense defensive coordinators did not have to worry about was the Saints run game. Over and over the Saints were unable to run the ball consistently and covert on short yardage situations.ย 

Now many people blame this on the Saints not having a "Guy" to get 10-15 touches a game and Sean Payton not committing to the run. Some would even go and say Reggie Bush is a bust, but I am positive he is not a bust.

A lot of these people consider the Saints' run game soft, but I insure you it is not. We might not have a Michael Turner and DeAngelo Williams like other teams in our division, but we have players who all complement each other.

Here I am going to give my views on the back field of the Saints heading into the 2009 season. Without Deuce McAllister, the Saints are looking for the power presence to be brought in from a number of backs. P.J. Hill and Lynell Hamilton are players to watch out for in training camp and could become the Saints' short yardage backs.

Truthfully, I feel the backfield of the Saints might have what it takes to make the Saints' offense balanced. The duo I would like to see in New Orleans would be Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas.

Reggie Bush has been labeled a bust by many but I honestly feel he is an impact player.

Reggie Bush is known for his tremendous speed and is always being criticised for going to the outside, but the truth is when the offensive line gave Bush the holes in the inside Reggie has taken the opportunity to run into the inside and always has the chance of breaking the big one.

For the first time in his career, Reggie has stepped up and showed up to all of the teams off season programs which shows he is ready to up and be the man.

In order for Reggie to be the man he will have to stay healthy and continue his performance of the 2008 season and take that into 2009. Reggie's ability toย  catch the ball in space and make defenders miss is always a compliment.

Pierre Thomas is every ones favorite to win the starting running back position in 2009. Thomas is more physical than Bush and is a north to south runner. Thomas 4.8 average in 2008 shows he can carry the load and when given the opportunity he takes complete advantage of it.

Thomas is also explosive in the receiving game and is a good catcher. Thomas has been used on occasions on short yardage he has failed at times but he has also converted plenty of times. Expect to see Thomas get a lot more touches in '09 than he did in '08.

My projected short yardage back is Mike Bell. Mike Bell is a great complement to both Bush and Thomas standing at 6'0" and weighing 225 pounds. Bell is a bruiser who can convert those short yardage situations.

Now many people might think I am a bit over board when I say the Saints running game is capable of having at least one 1,000 yard rusher in 2009 but I feel is the offensive line can get their selves together and Payton can commit to the run we could have a dominate running game to keep our defense off of the field.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.