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4th Down on 4 with Jim Haslett

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Tonights 4th down on 4 show was a full 30 minutes with Jim Haslett. They touched on just about every area of the team. Here is some of what was said as I recall: On 1st round draft choice Will ...

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Old 05-17-2004, 12:29 AM   #1
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4th Down on 4 with Jim Haslett

Tonights 4th down on 4 show was a full 30 minutes with Jim Haslett. They touched on just about every area of the team. Here is some of what was said as I recall:

On 1st round draft choice Will Smith Haslett said: You can only pick one guy and he was the best available when we picked. At rookie mini camp I personally timed him at 4.55 seconds in the 40. He is almost 6'3" and weighs 278 pounds. We will not play him as a linebacker. He is to talented as a linemen. We will drop him into coverage some though. He is very athletic, smart, quick and fast.

On Devery Henderson: There were only two true speed receivers in the draft. Lee Evans was the other. We expected Devery to be drafted earlier than where we picked him. He seems to be a smart young man as he picked up things well during rookie camp. He will have to work on being consistent in catching the ball.

On Courtney Watson: He is quick, smart, athletic and has great football instincts. We are not sure how much of a thumper he is but we will find out. We will play him in the middle and competition is open but he will have a battle there.

On Rodney Leilse instead of Chad Lavalais: Both were great college players who made big plays. We were looking for a bigger player to play the nose which is where Rodney will play. Chad is a bit smaller and would be a 3 technique player.

On Aaron Brooks: You hope that you get a 2 to 1 ratio of TD/INT from your QB and Aaron had a 3/1 ratio last year. That shows great decsision making on his part. The fumbles were a problem but we think that is something that can be corrected. We are going to put more on his shoulders this year as we plan to spread things out more often and take advantage of mismatches that we can create.

On Deuce McAllister: He has all the tools you want in a running back. He has the ability to be one of the best Saints players of all time. His weight is not an issue. We have asked him to lose 2 pounds, that's all. To have a 10 year career at the running back position you must take great care of your body. We have had a good running game in all 4 years so far with a 1,000+ yard rusher each year.

On Donte' Stallworth: A light seemed to have come on for him the last month of the season. Coming out as a 20 year old junior he wasn't as mature as it takes to be a professional football player in the NFL. He made great strides that last month of the year. He is the Deuce of wide receivers. He has that much talent. The injuries he had early on are behind him now and we expect him to have a great year this year.

On losing Terrelle Smith: Our fullback was only involved in 39% of the offensive snaps last year. As I said earlier, we plan to spread the field more this year and plan on putting our best 11 athletes on the field as often as possible. We will use more 2 TE sets with Conwell, Williams and also Hilton. We will use a fullback but less than in the past.

On LeCharles Bentley: He will start at center this year. He is coming off of knee surgery and we want to bring him back slowly without banging him up in the minis but we expect him to be ready to go for training camp.

On the wide receiver depth: We have never kept more than 5 receivers but expect to keep 6 this year. We will have great competition this year with Horn, Stallworth, Pathon, M. Lewis, Henderson, Gardner, Crowell, and D. Lewis.

On Michael Lewis: He is a great returner and has developed into a solid receiver. He will have competition this year at the return position.

On Cie Grant: He had surgery on the knee last year and it continued to bother him. Once he is able to overcome it and get on the field he will show his abilities to make plays. He has all of the intangibles. He just needs to get on the field.

On Darren Howard: We want to sign him to a long term contract and that is just what Mickey Lommis told him when he came in to sign his one year tender. He is our best player on defense.

On Mel Mitchell: He is 100% reovered, is running around with the same speed he had before the injury.

On the safety position: We plan on getting Jay Bellamy, Tebucky Jones, and Mel Mitchell on the field in some cases at the same time. We plan on using Jay at the dime position in the box some, and plan on lining Tebucky up man on man in a corner position in some of our alignments.

On Sedrick Hodge and James Allen: Both are similar players. Sedrick has played well for us and plays on passing downs. James is also fast and has good football insticts. The Dick Butkus, Ray Lewis don't just grow on trees. Those guys were good players who made themselves into great players.

On Johnathan Sullivan: Just like Donte', he came out as a 29 year old junior. It took him some time to adjust to the demands of the NFL. He has great talent and is a superb athlete. He is not overweight. He was not fined one time last year for his weight. We think he played well the second half of the year and will only get better.

On the corners: Ashley Ambrose is a solid veteran corner. Fred Thomas was sought after by several teams in free agency and we are delighted to have him back. We have been trying to get Jason Craft for a couple years now. He has great speed but is not overly big. Fahkir Brown played very well for us last year and we have KeyuoCraver and Deveron Harper. If we can acquire another player that will make us better here we would definately consider doing that.

On the defensive line depth: We have never kept more than 7 but will probably keep 8 and would love to keep 9. We feel we have depth at end with Howard, Grant, Smith, Whitehead, and . At tackle we have Sullivan, Leilse, Smith, Allen, Green, and Young.

On pre-season: We have less turnover on our roster this year than any year in the past. We will still be evaluating talent with the young guys but know what most of the others can do so that will let us work more towards getting ready for opening day.

[Edited on 17/5/2004 by SaintNik]
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Old 05-17-2004, 12:39 AM   #2
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4th Down on 4 with Jim Haslett

SaintNik --

Good recap. I posted one too. Yours is much better. We pretty much said the samething. Your\'s is much more in depth. Good job :thumbup:
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Old 05-17-2004, 10:15 AM   #3
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4th Down on 4 with Jim Haslett

Thanks Billy. I guess we were posting at the same time. Glad to know we heard the same thing and interpreted the it the same. Guess I can skip that hearing checkup.

For those who wanted to know the source where Billy had stated that the saints intended to spread the offense out I had heard the same thing a few months ago in an interview with McCarthy but on this show Haslett said it twice.
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