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this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; What Hass lacks in size, speed he makes up for with hands Tuesday, May 16, 2006 By Jimmy Smith Staff writer, Times-Picayune Here's a brief scouting report. The knock on him in college was his speed. Clock him with a ...

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Old 05-16-2006, 12:24 PM   #1
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Rookie WR Defies Scouts, LB Nattiel, Etc...

What Hass lacks in size, speed he makes up for with hands

Tuesday, May 16, 2006
By Jimmy Smith
Staff writer, Times-Picayune

Here's a brief scouting report.

The knock on him in college was his speed. Clock him with a sundial at times. But he always found a way to get open. And never dropped the ball.

That's what they said about Hall of Fame wide receiver Fred Biletnikoff when he came out of Florida State into the AFL with the Oakland Raiders.

And that's what they said about the Biletnikoff Award winner and Saints sixth-round draft choice Mike Hass of Oregon State.

Imagine that. The winner of the award given to the individual considered the best receiver in college football possessing the same characteristics as the man for whom the award is named.

"That's not a bad thing," Hass said Monday at the conclusion of the Saints' three-day rookie minicamp. "The guy's a Hall of Famer."

Thanks to the same gritty determination Hass has shown since he walked on as a freshman at Oregon State.

Practically unrecruited out of Jesuit High School in Portland, Ore.,just a shade over 6 feet (Biletnikoff was 6-1) and lacking in breakaway speed, Hass' innate ability to run routes, find an opening in the defense and catch the ball eventually won him a scholarship, first-team All-American honors and the Biletnikoff Award.

But his lack of ideal measurables at the national scouting combine in Indianapolis -- Hass didn't receive an invite to participate in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. -- probably caused his draft stock to drop, despite the fact he led the nation last season with 1,532 receiving yards and had a 139.27 per-game average, becoming the first receiver in Pacific-10 history to gain more than 1,000 yards three times.

Hass ran 4.59 seconds in the 40-yard dash at the combine and had a vertical leap of 32 inches. At Oregon State's pro day, Hass dropped his 40 time to 4.56 and put up a 36 ½-inch vertical leap.

Through five practices with the Saints, Hass took the first steps toward debunking the stereotypical myths associated with NFL wide receivers who presumably lack speed.

"I tell you what he can do: He can really catch the ball. He's really impressed me," Saints receiver coach Curtis Johnson said Monday. "He's got a good feel for the game. And he's a little bit faster than I thought he would be. He's a tough kid. And smart. He's everything you ask for. He can get open. He can separate. He also showed that he can run by guys. I'm glad we got him. I didn't think he'd be around. But we're glad to have him.

"He's fast enough. From what I've seen so far, he's running by guys. I mean we've got some good guys. In football, if you know how to separate, speed is important, but it's not the most important thing. He's fast enough. And he's got exceptional hands. I've seen him make some catches today that I haven't seen in a while. Mike will find a way to catch the ball. That's what you need, guys who can catch. That's why they're wide receivers."

Hass was scheduled to return to Oregon State today to resume classes -- he's working toward a degree in civil engineering. NFL rules will prohibit him from participating in the Saints' June 2-4 minicamp because his class will not have yet graduated. Therefore he won't be able to expand on the progress he made until training camp commences July 27.

Nevertheless, what Hass has done thus far likely will stick in the coaches' minds for the next couple of months.

And Hass' underdog history, he said, will work in his favor.

"There's a lot of good players everywhere," Hass said. "You've got to prove yourself every day, especially being a sixth-round pick. You've got to work your way up, play some special teams, and make your mark that way. Make your way up the chart."

Regardless of what it says in the scouting report.

HE'S DONE: Free-agent offensive lineman Will Allen, 6-4, 306 pounds, of Texas abruptly left the rookie minicamp after participating in four practices.

Allen apparently departed Sunday night, and was not at Monday morning's final workout.

"It's not for everybody," Saints coach Sean Payton said Monday. "Rather now, than take up a spot we could be bringing to camp. We wish him well. Disappointing is when you get to camp and find out he didn't come and you're one roster spot short. It's May now. We had a couple of young guys do some things in that position where we'll be just fine."

PICKS OF THE DAY: Free-agent linebacker Mike Nattiel of Florida intercepted two passes during separate drills Monday.

Nattiel, 5-11, 227, playing at middle linebacker, made a twisting interception of a pass from free-agent quarterback Joel Klatt in a skeleton passing drill, then grabbed a tipped ball in the team portion of the workout.

PRAISE FOR UNDRAFTEDS: Payton said, without being specific, he liked what he saw from several of the players who were signed for this rookie camp as free agents.

"There were a handful of them," Payton said. "We're going to meet with these guys and I'm sure when it's all said and done there'll be a few guys, even free-agent tryout guys, that we may look to sign. That's encouraging. These guys all recognize this as an opportunity. I know it's a short window of time. You want to make sure you're doing the right thing with your evaluation."


8)

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Old 05-16-2006, 12:26 PM   #2
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http://www.nola.com/sports/t-p/index...9725287110.xml
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Old 05-16-2006, 01:32 PM   #3
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I've been thinking all along that Hass could be the steal of the draft. Not just for the Saints, but for the entire league. I truly believe he could step up to be the #3 receiver this year and produce immediate results. I even put his pic that was posted as my background. I'm really amped about this kid.
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Old 05-17-2006, 07:36 AM   #4
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He is going to be a player that they will talk about.
"How could so many clubs pass on this kid till the 6th? Goes to show you combine numbers do not tell the whole story"
I could not believe he made it to the second day much less the 6th
Did_IT_UP2 he looks good huh
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Old 05-17-2006, 12:19 PM   #5
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Yes sir......I'm all over this kid. It's like many of us were comparing him to McCaffrey, Proehl, etc. when we drafted him. I feel he is going to be a tremendous compliment to Horn, Stallworth, or whoever they may have on the field. Other than Bush, Mike Hass is my favorite pick.
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Old 05-17-2006, 01:16 PM   #6
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4.56 is not exactly lacking in speed. He doesn't seem slow on tape. I think it's just one of those labels people get stuck with because of stereotypes and misinformation regurgitation by 'experts.' He's obviously not Stallworth or Horn but he's not Proehl either.
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Old 05-17-2006, 05:45 PM   #7
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Kind of reminds me of Eric Martin. Martin was not a very fast guy, but I remember him usually catching everything thrown to him, and he seemed to run good routes. If Hass can come close to Martin's production, then look out! Hass also seems to have superior work ethics. If injuries do not come his way, he could wind up being a lock for 80 receptions every year.
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Old 05-18-2006, 01:54 AM   #8
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Haas is the steal of the draft, no doubt!!

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Old 05-18-2006, 07:56 PM   #9
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Dare I say Dan Abramowicz?
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Old 05-19-2006, 03:43 PM   #10
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We may have drafeted the best wide reciever in the draft along with the beft running back. Anyone know of a team drafting the best back and reciever in the same draft?
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