Just the other day I was doing one of our many podcasts for BTSC (you can check out all of them in the player below this article) and a fan on our YouTube channel asked for an update on Devin Bush. It was funny, because since rookie minicamp and the first week of Organized Team Activities (OTAs), we haven’t heard much about Bush.
Some might say that no news is good news, and I get that, but the Steelers made an aggressive move to draft Bush and fans want to know how the prized 2019 NFL Draft pick is doing — rightfully so.
Recently ESPN put out an article where all of their respective beat writers for all 32 NFL teams talked about how the top pick for each team is handling life in the NFL. For the Steelers, this meant Jeremy Fowler. See what he had to say about Bush’s short time in OTAs:
No. 10: Pittsburgh Steelers
ILB Devin Bush: The Steelers thrust Bush into the starting rotation right away, and his coverage skills have been on display. He has shown the ability to get into passing lanes with his quickness. The team wants to expedite his learning curve. Defensive end Cam Heyward said Bush needs more bass in his voice if he’s going to call plays. And he’ll need to improve his tackling angles in the running game at this level. But so far, he looks like he belongs among a linebacker group that includes veterans Vince Williams and Mark Barron.
Some might read this and suggest it is nothing more than the usual post-draft pomp and circumstance, but I read it and focus on one thing — “he looks like he belongs”
Bush is slightly undersized for his position, and his athleticism makes up for a lot, or it did in college. As Fowler points out there are things which he will have to improve upon before actually taking an official NFL snap, his pursuit angles against the run would fall into that category.
See the video below for an example of this:
Really like Trey Edmunds. He got around Devin Bush here. @TheAthleticPGH pic.twitter.com/AeTNw1E4ua— Mark Kaboly (@MarkKaboly) May 30, 2019
If you are someone who actually looked at this situation with a solid head on your shoulders, you didn’t expect perfection from Day 1. There will be bumps in the road, and while I do think Bush will play a lot his rookie season, he will also spend some time on the sideline watching Mark Barron and Vince Williams do their thing.
Since everyone loves to compare Bush to Ryan Shazier, remember that even though Shazier started as a rookie, many were calling him a bust and an injury-prone player by the end of his year one.
Be excited, but also be both realistic and patient. Let’s see what this young man can do when the pads go on and the real hitting starts to take place. As always, training camp will make or break a player’s shot at making the team. We know Bush will make the team, but what kind of impression he leaves on coaches, teammates and fans has yet to be seen.