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Reggie Bush still has Miami Dolphins role, GM says

INDIANAPOLIS -- Miami Dolphins fans assume by now that Reggie Bush will be playing elsewhere. Publicly, general manager Jeff Ireland doesn't see it that way.

"I certainly would (see a role for Bush on the Dolphins)," Ireland told reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine on Thursday. "You would love to have his skill set on the football team."

It's hard to see this as anything but GM-speak. The Dolphins would like to have Bush, who will be a free agent, but only at a low price. They don't see him as a true starting running back, and Ireland spoke about the potential emergence of Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas.

Ireland had a few other good nuggets during his session:

  1. Ireland indicated the Dolphins already have decided to use the franchise tag. He said there was a "likelihood" of it at one point. At another point, he said he had a "pretty good idea" of where he was going for it.
  1. Ireland sounded less optimistic about re-signing offensive tackle Jake Long. Ireland said it was a "complicated" negotiation that has elements other contracts would not.
  1. My guess for that tag: Defensive tackle Randy Starks. Ireland said keeping the defensive line strong is a priority. Ireland said it was "very important" to get Starks back.

The other option for a tag: Cornerback Sean Smith. Ireland spoke very positively about Smith's experience and play. The Miami Herald has reported that Smith won't get the tag. Ireland said there was a "long way to go" in contract talks with Smith, but he felt optimistic about them.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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