A general rule of thumb when putting linebackers on the field is to have the most atheltic of the bunch on the outside and least atheltic on the inside. Before Demeco Ryans went out last year Cushing was one of the outside linebackers for the Houston Texans. How good this kid could be showed in 2009. During his rookie season Cushing had 86 tackles and 4 sacks.
During Cushing’s second season in the league he posted only 53 tackles and 1.5 sacks with no interceptions. Sophmore slump some might argue. Actually it was a bevy of issues that explain his drop off in 2010. The Sophmore slump that most rookies go through during their 2nd season typically does happen but along with the regression during year two. Cushing actually missed the first 4 games due to the whole over-training which led to a positive test for a banned substance issue. Then upon Brian Cushing’s return a move to the middle linebacker spot and calling the defenses in place of injured team captain Demeco Ryans most definitely added to Cushing’s pressure to perform in only his second season. Cushing’s violent and reckless play seemed to give him a disadvantage at middle linebacker where he actually needed to be more patient in order to read and react which is typically required at the position. These all contributed to Cushing having a reduction in production on the field.
Coach Gary Kubiak recently went on record in regards to Brian Cushing saying that , “I think he’ll be gangbusters.”
Gangbusters? Quite the confidence statement but what else is the head coach going to say? His job is to get the team ready and if one way is to commondeer the local papers in order to get word of his confidence to members of the Texans, during a lockout when there can be no player and coach communications, then so be it.
This season Brian Cushing will be back in the middle along side a healthy Demeco Ryans and this will undoubtedly help serve Cushing’s improvement this year.
NFL Scout Jayson Braddock recently on the Mighty Gwinn Radio show when discussing Brian Cushing going “Gangbusters” had this to say, “He will be better than he was in 2010, he won’t be anywhere close to where he was in 2009.”
While statistically not missing four games in 2011 will with out question show for an overall improvement on the stat sheet in comparison to the 2010 season the only thing the Houston Texans need from the young linebacker is merely for Brian Cushing just to be better in 2011 and execute in all things on and off the field!
The Texans don’t need Cushing to be great they simply need him to be better and on the field.
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