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TheOak 02-04-2014 09:20 AM

Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
(Mike Triplett)

Current depth chart:

Marques Colston. Age 30, signed through 2016. 2014 salary and bonuses: $5.6 million. 2014 salary-cap number: $8.3 million.

Kenny Stills. Age 21, signed through 2016. 2014 salary and bonuses: $495,000. 2014 salary-cap number: $543,613.

Lance Moore. Age 30, signed through 2015. 2014 salary and bonuses: $3.8 million. 2014 salary-cap number: $5.07 million.

Robert Meachem. Age 29, unrestricted free agent.

Nick Toon. Age 25, signed through 2015. 2014 salary and bonuses: $570,000. 2014 salary-cap number: $671,903.

Joe Morgan. Age 25, restricted free agent.

Analysis:

As I wrote in my latest mailbag, I don’t think the Saints need to upgrade with a new “No. 1 receiver.” But they certainly need to start re-stocking the shelves with their longtime veterans getting older. And they could use a dynamic downfield threat somewhere in the mix.

Colston and Stills will be back as the Saints’ starters, which is a solid 1-2 punch. Although Colston had more quiet stretches than usual last year, I think he’s still playing at a high level. I never agreed with the notion that he was “slowing down” significantly last year. Speed and separation have never been the keys to his game -- he’s more about catching contested throws with his physicality, range and great hands. He finished with 75 catches for 943 yards and five touchdowns, and I think he can continue that production level for another couple years.

Stills, meanwhile, should only grow after his impressive rookie debut (32 catches for 641 yards and five touchdowns). The Saints used him often as a deep threat since he drew single coverage. But he’s a big target who can do a little of everything, which is why he became a primary starter this past year.

Beyond those two, however, this position is filled with uncertainty, starting with Moore. Although Moore has been a huge part of the Saints’ offense since the beginning of the Sean Payton-Drew Brees era, he has become a part-time player, and he’s due to make a lot of money in 2014. I was surprised by the way the Saints used Moore this past season as a No. 3 receiver behind Stills. He did, however, finish the season strong. So it’s possible they may discuss a pay cut that could keep him in New Orleans.

Meachem’s future is also uncertain since he’s an unrestricted free agent. He didn’t play a huge role in the offense last year (16 catches for 324 yards and two touchdowns). But he did still average 20.3 yards per catch, and he’s an asset as a blocker (he’s the receiver in their heavy run formations). So it’s possible he could come back and play a similar role in 2014.

Morgan appeared to have a lock on that deep threat/blocking role last summer before he suffered a season-ending torn ACL. Assuming the Saints re-sign him as a restricted free agent, he’ll have a chance to earn that same role again this summer. But he has now missed two seasons with major injuries, so he needs to prove he can shake off the rust. That’s a lot of “ifs” for a guy who might cost around $1.5 million or more, depending on the RFA tender.

I think Toon will get another chance to crack the Saints’ rotation this year. Although he struggled during his big audition against the New York Jets last year with two dropped passes, the Saints are still high on his future. He was inactive for most of the season because he was the No. 5 receiver, and the Saints typically only keep four active. … However, the physical Toon will have to impress this summer to beat out Meachem or Morgan or any potential newcomers.

Read More
Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver - New Orleans Saints Blog - ESPN

TheOak 02-04-2014 09:24 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
"Speed and separation" are not the keys to the game...

A receivers ability to get off the line and into his route when the defense is playing press-man is. Seattle's ability to play press-man this season is the sole reason Brees, and Manning had the problems they did.

Utah_Saint 02-04-2014 09:39 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TheOak (Post 576963)
"Speed and separation" are not the keys to the game...

A receivers ability to get off the line and into his route when the defense is playing press-man is. Seattle's ability to play press-man this season is the sole reason Brees, and Manning had the problems they did.

Colston had a great game against Seattle.
11 catches for 144 yards and a touchdown.

exile 02-04-2014 09:45 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
We need some additional youth in this department. I'm not sold on Toon or Morgan really. And this draft is deep at the WR position. A guy like Matthews or Cooks would light up the who dat chants on gameday. Let's do it!

Euphoria 02-04-2014 09:45 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
I agree with this. I think we need a big WR. We aren't getting any younger and when a team wants to press our WR needs to knock them on there butts.

I see us grabbing a WR in round 1

halloween 65 02-04-2014 10:07 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by exile (Post 576966)
We need some additional youth in this department. I'm not sold on Toon or Morgan really. And this draft is deep at the WR position. A guy like Matthews or Cooks would light up the who dat chants on gameday. Let's do it!

Matthews reminds me of Colston, I would love to get this guy in the draft, solid pick with great hands. I think we draft 2 this year.

papz 02-04-2014 10:50 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
Peshek: WR Metrics 2.0 - Out Of The Box - Rotoworld.com

That should give you something to think about regarding Matthews.

I'd like Landry, Landry again, and then some Beckham. Being coached already by Cam Cameron and a former NFL WR, just makes these two that much more appealing. Both are also beast on special teams. Beckman as a returner(an area which we need more explosiveness on) and Landry as a special teams ace(he's a beast attacking returners).

And here are the metrics for the "top 4" receivers.

Peshek: Top 4 WR Metrics - Out Of The Box - Rotoworld.com

halloween 65 02-04-2014 11:07 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by papz (Post 576974)
Peshek: WR Metrics 2.0 - Out Of The Box - Rotoworld.com

That should give you something to think about regarding Matthews.

I'd like Landry, Landry again, and then some Beckham. Being coached already by Cam Cameron and a former NFL WR, just makes these two that much more appealing. Both are also beast on special teams. Beckman as a returner(an area which we need more explosiveness on) and Landry as a special teams ace(he's a beast attacking returners).

And here are the metrics for the "top 4" receivers.

Peshek: Top 4 WR Metrics - Out Of The Box - Rotoworld.com

Good read but Matthews will more than likely go in the 3rd or 4th round and in those rounds he would be solid. If I would draft in the 1st Laundry would be appealing. I just don't see a WR in the first I wish we would trade out of the 1st myself for more picks.It also seems to be a pretty deep draft on WR this year.

blackangold 02-04-2014 11:38 AM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Utah_Saint (Post 576965)
Colston had a great game against Seattle.
11 catches for 144 yards and a touchdown.

And a pass to boot.... oh wait a minute... lol

Euphoria 02-04-2014 02:29 PM

Re: Ranking Saints needs: No. 3 Wide receiver
 
I'd argue we need a #1...

The problem is we don't run an offense that uses a true #1 much less a #3 WR. THey are all role players.


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