Jan 11, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; New Orleans Saints free safety Rafael Bush (25) hits Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Percy Harvin (right) in front of Saints defensive back Trevin Wade (30) during the first half of the 2013 NFC divisional playoff football game at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Yesterday, news leaked that the Falcons made an offer sheet to New Orleans safety Rafael Bush. The Saints will have till April 8th to match Atlanta’s offer, but with the blockbuster signing of Jairus Byrd, and the bright future of Kenny Vacarro, the Saints may just let Bush land back with the team he started with.
As the Saints 3rd safety, Bush saw significant playing time in a scheme that frequently fielded three safeties at once. Throughout the season, he displayed a physical tackling technique and a wide range, which is exactly what Atlanta needs at the Free Safety position. Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller seems to think highly of him as well.
It’s no secret that Atlanta would like to trade up in the draft, but to do so they would need to sign a veteran player, or hope to hit on a day 3 prospect to occupy one of their biggest needs. Signing Bush gives Dimitroff some new found flexibility, and makes a trade for South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney more reasonable for a Falcons team that desperately needs a top-tier pass rusher. Bush would be an excellent filler, and would more than likely win the starting job beside close friend William Moore.
This also puts the Saints in quite a predicament. They can either match the offer, and worsen their already narrow cap situation. Or, they could let him walk and send one of their own to a hated rival. My guess is with the signing of CFL Safety Marcus Ball, the Saints are preparing for his departure.
Rafael Bush will fill a need for the Atlanta Falcons at saftey and if he can be an everydown player for them in 2014 he will be a fantastic signing.