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Stinchcomb gets his chance

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; METAIRIE — The New Orleans Saints have created an opening for offensive tackle Jon Stinchcomb much like the ones he tries to create for ball carriers. Earlier this month, the Saints traded Wayne Gandy, their starting left tackle for the ...

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Old 04-24-2006, 08:19 AM   #1
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Stinchcomb gets his chance

METAIRIE — The New Orleans Saints have created an opening for offensive tackle Jon Stinchcomb much like the ones he tries to create for ball carriers.

Earlier this month, the Saints traded Wayne Gandy, their starting left tackle for the last three seasons, to Atlanta, moved Jammal Brown from right tackle to left, and inserted Stinchcomb as the first-team right tackle.

Stinchcomb’s spot as a starter is far from secure — coach Sean Payton has said the team will bring in more offensive linemen, and Virginia tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson is a player the Saints might select in the first round of next week’s draft — but now Stinchcomb has the best opportunity of his four-year career to play.

Payton talked to Stinchcomb about his opportunity after Gandy was dealt away.

“He spoke to me about there being an opportunity,� Stinchcomb said after a workout this week. “From my vantage point, as of right now, it’s the best opportunity for me since I’ve been here. For the first three seasons I was slated as a left tackle behind Wayne Gandy and Wayne’s a great player.

“From day one I knew that it was going to be an uphill battle trying to break into the lineup at left tackle. You can’t take anything away from that guy. He’s just a consistent, solid player and he’s been doing it for (12 years) now. He’s been around, so that was a daunting task from day one. Now that he’s gone, it’s got to be a better opportunity for me.�

Stinchcomb is still rehabilitating from a severe knee injury. At the beginning of last training camp, he suffered a ruptured patellar tendon in his right knee.

“That was a very trying time for me,� Stinchcomb said. “I had one of the best off-seasons. I felt as good physically as I ever have. I felt like I was having a good camp even as short as it was. We were only in our second week, so it was extremely quick.

“Any time you feel like you’ve got the ball rolling, preparing yourself to get out there, and in an instant it’s taken away from you it’s very challenging. It’s been frustrating, it’s been very humbling and demanding a number of different ways — just to stay focused and realize this is temporary and not something you can’t overcome.�

Stinchcomb is on schedule in what is an estimated 12-month rehab. He said he’s not restricted from any work, but he still has a ways to go before he can do everything as well as he needs. He said he should be 100 percent before the season.

“Mini-camp was definitely a step in the right direction,â€? he said. “Iââ‚ ¬Ã¢Â„¢ve got a lot of work left in front of me just to build strength and change direction and get stability. Everything’s right on track, right where it should be.

“I just don’t have the strength like it needs to be and the lateral movement is something that’s going to have to come, but that’s expected. That’s where I am in the progression of this rehab — just continuing to build this muscle up and build the muscles around the tendon that was ruptured.�

Stinchcomb said he knows coming back from a patellar tendon injury can be more difficult than other knee injuries.

“Itâ₠¬â„¢s a very serious injury and one with which you can have some complications,â€? he said. “The kneecap can end up residing a little too low or a little too high, the it doesn’t track right.

“Knock on wood and thank the Lord above, I haven’t had any setbacks along the way so far. It’s been a slow road, but it’s been a smooth road to this point. Eight months in should you have a good feel about how things are going and how the tendon’s being repaired. It’s been a good process.�

Stinchcomb said he’s most comfortable playing tackle, on either side, even though the previous coaching staff considered playing him at guard.

“Iââ‚ ¬Ã¢Â„¢m a tackle,â€? he said. “Can I play other positions? Yes, I can. If that’s what they need me to do, then that’s what I do, but I think my natural position is at tackle. In college I played both and I feel comfortable on both sides. I want to be out there.â€?

Stinchcomb, a second-round draft choice from Georgia in 2003, had five different position coaches in five seasons as a Bulldog, including Saints line coach Doug Marrone, who’s also offensive coordinator, in his sophomore season.

Stinchcomb has played in just 10 NFL games as a lineman, but he said he’s developed more than that limited experience might suggest.

“Just two years — I would say three but last year was taken away because of my knee — to (practice) against Charles Grant, Darren Howard, Will Smith, those guys are great defensive ends in this league,� Stinchcomb said. “In the NFC South, you’re going to see guys like that every Sunday.

“There was a lot I came into here needing to work on and it’s not like I’ve just been sitting in the back of the room for the last three years, and not getting better. I’ve had a lot to work on and I’ve improved vastly in a number of areas and I know that from day one to now I’m a much better player. I appreciate the opportunity to get better, but I’m very eager to get out there and start playing.�
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Old 04-24-2006, 09:28 AM   #2
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As I said a while ago, I am ready to roll with Stinch at RT. I think he can perform reasonably well there, and will surprise a lot of the doubters.
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Old 04-24-2006, 09:43 AM   #3
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Ditto on Stinch support. How amny times have we said give the guys a chance to see what they can do? It seems all the more that Haz definitely had favorites. If you weren't on the list you didn't play or were on the practice squad.

Even more than Stinch I am supporting the new regime. If they are ready to roll with what we have on the OL, DL, or LB even I will cheer on even if I disagree. If it pans out for the better then we have a real coaching staff and front office. If not, we'll see how the direction continues. I gave Haz a solid two years of support. As the questions increased it turned to skepticism concerning him and cynicism that Benson and the FO let it continue to spiral downward the past two seasons.
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Old 04-24-2006, 11:10 AM   #4
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I think this is reason why we are NOT drafting Brick....they had this kind of faith in Stinch last season ...right before his inj....
I'm with it......
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Old 04-25-2006, 12:54 PM   #5
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I think Stinch is ready. And that will allow us not to waste a pick and I mean waste a pick on D'Brick. Sorry guys but i just don't want to use a 1st round pick on the O-Line.
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Old 04-25-2006, 01:09 PM   #6
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I don't think we need a reasonable good OL... we need DOMINATION. If we are ever going to win big games and even contend for a SB we have to dominate the lines. What have we done since the departure of Roaf... diddley.

We have to seriously be going after Brick and mangold.
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Old 04-25-2006, 01:17 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Euphoria
I don't think we need a reasonable good OL... we need DOMINATION. If we are ever going to win big games and even contend for a SB we have to dominate the lines. What have we done since the departure of Roaf... diddley.

We have to seriously be going after Brick and mangold.
This again? how may Superbowls did we win with Roaf? How many has KC won with him?
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Old 04-25-2006, 01:22 PM   #8
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dude... I am thinking you are just picking on me to just pick on me now, because I know you are a smarter and more intelligent dude that this petty crap...

How many playoff games have we won since roaf left??? How many times have KC made the playoffs since roaf got there???
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Old 04-25-2006, 01:27 PM   #9
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Is the object to make the playoffs or win the Superbowl? Low priorities? And NONE of the recent Superbowl teams, or teams who have made it, have dominant lines. IT'S A MYTH. I am goona say this slow for you, NOONE has had a "dominant" line since the pre salary cap Cowboys. The Rams won with a swiss cheese line, Warner just got that ball out fast. NE's line was NEVER dominant. Tampa Bay's definitely wasn't. Neither was Pittsburgh's nor was Seattle's. Not Philly's either. Atlanta became the number one rushing team in the league, or near the top the last few years with one key addition, you know who? THE LINE COACH FROM DENVER, another team without a dominating line, who wins on schemes. Get real. You keep making the same arguments oblivious to the facts.
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Old 04-25-2006, 01:47 PM   #10
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Here's a disturbing thought - Stinchcomb vs. Peppers twice a year. What side does Simeon Rice play? I want Hawk, but I also want RT addressed.
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