DAVIE, Fla. The odor is a bit less pungent these days in Miami. That includes Reggie Bush.
It was after a humiliating Oct. 23 loss to Denver the Miami running back said, "Right now, this team stinks."
He was right. The Dolphins were 0-6 at the time and had just kicked away a 15-0 lead in the final three minutes to lose 18-15 in overtime.
What Bush didn't specifically say then was that he was stinking it up as well. In the team's first six games, he'd rushed for a meager 232 yards.
But Bush can say it now. It's a lot easier considering he's rushed for 195 yards in the past two games while averaging 7.0 yards per carry. And his Dolphins finally have won, moving to 1-7 after a 31-3 rout last Sunday at Kansas City.
"I know when you make those type of comments, you better show up and play next week," Bush said Wednesday at the Dolphins training complex, where they prepare to play host Sunday to Washington. "As a leader on this team, you have to step up. I felt like, at the time, as a team, that's how I felt about us. I felt we needed to be better, everybody, no matter who it was I never said that the Miami Dolphins stink, but I'm good. I was talking about everybody, and I meant everybody collectively, including myself."
Bush looked less smelly while rushing for 103 yards Oct. 30 against the New York Giants, but the Dolphins still lost 20-17. Then he put up 95 against the Chiefs and caught three passes for 50 yards.
After hearing Bush's "stink" comment, Dolphins safety Yeremiah Bell took offense. He then said about Bush, "He stinks."
But all seems to be well these days between Bush and Bell. That's what a win will do.
"No, I won't take any credit," Bell said with a laugh about whether he believed he fired up Bush.
One of Bush's backfield mates, though, does believe the stink talk got Bush going.
"I'm sure it put a little fire in him," said Charles Clay. "Why wouldn't it? We're all competitors."
One win has changed the mood a bit in Dolphinville, but there were questions being asked Wednesday about an incident that happened when Miami still was winless.
Cornerback Vontae Davis was left behind when the Dolphins traveled to Kansas City for non-football reasons. While the team wouldn't reveal why, NFL Network reported Davis got into a fight at practice last Friday with wide receiver Brandon Marshall, and the Miami Herald reported Davis was banished due to being late for that day's practice while having the smell of alcohol on his breath.
Yes, he was accused of having a literal stink.
With players having been given Monday off, Wednesday was the first day Davis met with the media. He was given ample opportunity to provide his side of the story.
"Right now, I'm getting ready for the Washington Redskins," was all that was said about the situation by Davis, who Miami coach Tony Sparano said will indeed start Sunday.
Marshall also was asked what happened. On three straight questions, he said, "I can't hear you," or variations of that.
At least quarterback Matt Moore was around to confirm there was a situation between the two.
"I really didn't know what was going on when everything was happening," Moore said. "Whatever it was, it just worked out. And maybe it was motivation or some things that needed to get out, because I think guys definitely reacted and played well. I'm not saying that I want that to occur every week, but it is what is and we've moved past it."
As for Wednesday, there were cheers heard at the training complex. They came when Sparano announced to his players that Moore had been named AFC Offensive Player of the Week.
"I can't do it without any of those guys," said Moore, who completed 17 of 23 passes for 233 yards and three touchdowns against the Chiefs. "So, I'm just proud of everybody and thankful, I guess, for the award."
Moore can offer plenty of thanks to Bush. On the season, Bush has 427 yards on 88 carries (4.9 average). Not that anybody is about to suggest he one day will have a bust in the Hall of Fame, but the first-year Dolphin is looking a lot less like a bust of another kind.
"The body feels good, and it feels good to get our first win," Bush said of his season at the midpoint. "Guys were pretty pleased with that. The fans are probably pretty pleased with that, finally seeing us get a win. So, hopefully we can carry this momentum into the next week against the Redskins."
The Redskins (3-5) have lost four straight games. One could say they stink.
At least for now, Bush and the Dolphins have located an air freshener.
ChrisTomasson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @christomasson.