Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – One of the more surprising incidents in the Miami Dolphins’ blowout loss to the Tennessee Titans Sunday was the benching of starting running back Reggie Bush.
After fumbling the ball in the first quarter, Bush was sent to the bench for the rest of the first half and was never really a factor in the rest of the game. Bush finished the game with just four carries for 21 yards and one catch for eight yards.
While some fans may have disagreed with Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin’s move to bench Bush, the starting running back agreed with the coach’s decision.
“I didn’t deserve to be back in there,” Bush told CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald. “I fumbled the ball and I’ve had two fumbles lost this year. I have to do a better job of protecting the ball. I’ve been in this league long enough to know protecting the ball is the most important thing as a running back.”
Philbin downplayed the benching of Bush after the game.
“We’ve got a game coming up really fast. We had planned to use guys,” Philbin told the Herald. “We’d been using Daniel Thomas and we used Lamar [Miller] sparingly last week. Our hope was to spread the plays a little bit.”
Bush took to Twitter later in the day to personally apologize to Dolphins fans everywhere.
“I have to apologize to Dolphin Nation. My performance these past few weeks have been poor & I’m embarrassed right now! You guys deserve better,” Bush Tweeted.
The benching could be the first in a chain of events that could see Bush leave the Dolphins. Bush is a free agent at the end of the season and after starting out strong; he’s cooled off in recent weeks and hasn’t rushed for more than 100 yards in a game since week two.
Bush has rushed 28 times for 121 yards over the last three games for the Dolphins. The Fins are 1-2 over that time period. For the season, Bush has rushed 126 times for 555 yards and four touchdowns. He also has 21 catches for 179 yards in 2012.
So far, the Dolphins aren’t known to have shown much interest in signing Bush to a long-term contract. Bush will be back on the field on Thursday when the Dolphins play the Buffalo Bills.