SAN DIEGO -- Hue Jackson approached Michael Bush in the Raiders' halftime locker room."You're going to be getting the ball about 15 more times," the rookie coach told the bruising running back.Bush's response? "Feed the stud," Bush said, a grin growing on his face with every syllable.And Jackson's reaction? "He did."Bush finished with a game-high 157 yards rushing, on a career-high 30 carries, including a 44-yard burst and a 2-yard touchdown plunge. He also caught three passes for 85 yards.His 242 yards from scrimmage were the most by a Raiders player since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, eclipsing the 235 total yards Bo Jackson had on Monday Night Football at Seattle in 1987.
It is the fourth-highest total in Raiders franchise history.
No, Bush is no Darren McFadden.Then again, he does not need to be.As written and said time and again, Bush is the thunder to McFadden's lightning, and Thursday night, on a nationally-televised prime time stage, Bush showed his variety of talents in the Raiders' white-knuckle 24-17 victory.So what did fullback Marcel Reece see as Bush's blocking back?"Michael," Reece deadpanned. "Just a whole lot of Michael. That's what I saw. That's just a taste of what Michael can do. As these guys' fullback, it's just a blessing to play in front of them."Michael has every tool in his arsenal right now, and he showed it tonight. Really, it makes everyone else's job on this team easier."True, on a few of his plays on which he found himself in the open field, especially those backside screen passes to Bush, a certain No. 20 would have taken it to the house. But that's not a fair comparison, either.Bush answered the challenge with aplomb and took a lot of pressure off quarterback Carson Palmer."He's a great downhill runner," said Chargers safety Eric Weddle. "He's a huge back. When he had creases and lanes, he gets through them. It's hard to arm tackle guys that good. You have to get your whole body in front. They were effective."Bush gave credit to the offensive line."I felt good," he said. "I will probably feel it tomorrow. I was just in sync. The line was talking to me, Carson was talking and we were communicating on the field."This is new. We have not been doing it for a while in the past. It felt right today."