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Free Agent Spotlight: S, Deon Bush

Our free agent spotlight series continues today with a look at a corner out of Chicago.

Minnesota Vikings v Chicago Bears Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Looking at our potential free agents for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could pursue this offseason, today we look at safety, Deon Bush.

Coming into this, Bush would definitely be more of a depth guy if signed given the Buccaneers current talent at the safety position.

Deon Bush’s Career Thus Far

Minnesota Vikings v Chicago Bears Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

For four years, Bush played for the Miami Hurricanes, where he made a significant impact starting his freshman year. In the 2016 NFL Draft, Bush was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the fourth round. Coming into the draft, it was known he was a hard-hitter who could play either safety position.

In five seasons, Bush started just eight games, and six of those games were during his rookie year. This past season, against the New York Giants, Bush caught his first career interception. On the season, he also had two pass deflections and five tackles.

Following his fourth year, the Bears signed Bush to a one-year, $1.4 million contract. He competed for the starting job but with Eddie Jackson and Tashaun Gipson ahead of him, he wasn’t able to win the starting job. He also was put on the COVID-19 Reserve List and was forced to it out a game.

Why It Works

It’s likely that this deal will not happen between Bush and the Bucs. If it were to happen, the Bucs would be getting a reliable reserve safety to play behind Antoine Winfield Jr. and Jordan Whitehead.

The backup free safety, Andrew Adams, is a free agent which is the reason why I still think the Bucs could pursue a guy like Bush for cheap. Despite some minor injuries, Bush has proven that he is a hard-hitting safety who has passion on the defensive side of the ball. Sometimes his aggressiveness hurts him with some missed tackles but he can improve.

There are not a ton of safeties out there in this free agency who are as diverse as Bush. Next year, if Winfield or Whitehead were to go down for an injury, Bush is the perfect guy you would want as the backup. Not only does his diversity help, but his experience plays a key role as well. Next year will be his sixth season and he could also help some of the younger guys with development.

But...

Bush has had some injuries during his time in Chicago. In 2020, he dealt with a hamstring issue that put him out for multiple games. He was also put on the Reserve/COVID-19 list and missed multiple games with that as well.

The Bears have also made it known they want Bush back in Chicago for the 2021-22 season.

Chicago Bears v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images

It is also doubtful that the Bucs would want to sign a veteran safety as inexperienced as Bush. There are some guys out there who would cost close to the same price. There is also a chance they draft a guy on day two or three and hope he can sprout in the next few years.

What’s The Cost?

Following last season, the Chicago Bears signed Bush to a 1-year, $1.4 million contract. I doubt Bush will sign for much more than that this season.

Even if the Bucs were to match the Bears offer, Bush has already spent time in Chicago and would likely prefer to stay there.

If the Bucs were to pursue Bush, they wouldn’t overpay for him and they'd likely spend that money elsewhere. There are many more guys they would like to keep around and spending money on a reserve is probably not worth it.

What We Don’t Know

Will Bush be able to play a full season and if so, what type of impact would he have on the team? It is also unknown if Bush wants to sign somewhere knowing he will be a reserve. Antoine Winfield JR. and Jordan Whitehead will be the starting safeties next season nd that isn't really in question. It seems he has a much better starting in Chicago then he would coming to Tampa.

Make The Decision

Chicago Bears v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

So, what are your thoughts? Should the Bucs go after a reserve safety in Bush? Would he compete for a job if he was here? Has he showed what he's fully capable of yet? Let us know via the poll/comment section below!

Poll

When it comes to Melvin Ingram III, what would you have the Buccaneers do?

This poll is closed

  • 2%
    Sign him, no matter what
    (8 votes)
  • 30%
    Make an offer, but keep it reasonable
    (105 votes)
  • 19%
    invite him for a cup of coffee and see where it goes
    (67 votes)
  • 23%
    Call him up if they still have a need after the draft
    (82 votes)
  • 24%
    Don’t need him
    (86 votes)
348 votes total Vote Now