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Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; As we continue our off-season mini-series of how to fix the biggest problems of the New Orleans Saints in advance of the 2015 Season, this morning we arrive at Part 2 (following yesterday’s look at the linebacker unit in Part ...

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Old 01-06-2015, 07:48 AM   #1
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As we continue our off-season mini-series of how to fix the biggest problems of the New Orleans Saints in advance of the 2015 Season, this morning we arrive at Part 2 (following yesterday’s look at the linebacker unit in Part 1) of the positions that need to be addressed: Finding some “new young blood” for an aging and rapidly declining offensive line.

It’s a group that in 2014, had one of its worst years ever in the Payton-Brees Era. With the notable exception of Zach Strief, who was singled out for his outstanding protection of QB Drew Brees, the rest of this group struggled mightily.

Fixing the Saints Part 2: New Young Blood on the O-Line

Last edited by papz; 01-06-2015 at 12:04 PM..
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Old 01-06-2015, 08:03 AM   #2
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

Grubbs, Evans, goodwin and Strief all need to go

It would be great if we could get something in return via a trade.
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Old 01-06-2015, 08:22 AM   #3
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

OL you know i am pushing for a move here.

Do you really think Derek Newton or Bryan Bulaga will be allowed to leave town? i just do not see it. they will resign with their teams by all odds

Draft?

The two i am hoping for both for position but also the ability to slide inside to guard are Brandon Scherff or La’El Collins. Two birds with one stone IMO. Step in at RT and give the saints time to get the next piece in line for the inevitable change over that is coming in 2 years.

Drafting a tackle only player? like Andrus Peat that they mentioned or any of the 3/6 top tackles in the draft works too. looks to be plenty of OT talent this year in the first round. Its not as appealing IMO but if you can get RT locked down and keep Zach as the swing man we would be in better shape than we have in years.

Then a player like Cameron Erving becomes interesting inside, but 6'6" OC or OG in front of Drew might not be the best idea lol. then again i see the reason people like the kid but that last game he played left me unimpressed. ok he just started playing OC so give him a break i guess. Oddly enough he might turn out to be a good RT with some coaching.

anyways if we do not get some talent up front for Drew i would start listening for trade offers. it is not fair to him

Hey all those Johnny football lovers out there how about the Browns Johnny football and first for Drew. heck i bet they will throw in Gordan for nothing too.
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Old 01-06-2015, 08:42 AM   #4
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

Originally Posted by dizzle88 View Post
Grubbs, Evans, goodwin and Strief all need to go

It would be great if we could get something in return via a trade.
I dizzagree,

First I try to restructure Grubbs and Evans. They're shadows of their former selves but they are better than average, just grossly overpaid.

I firmly believe you keep em until someone better is attainable. That's not a given yet.

Strief is still a top 5 RT in the league. I don't know why anyone would want to get rid of him yet.
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Old 01-06-2015, 09:33 AM   #5
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

I would keep Grubbs, Lelito(yes I said Lelito) Strief and Armstead for sure. I would draft a stud C and G in the draft. Grubbs at G with a new G next to a stud C with Strief and Armstead starting with Lelito as the swing man or Grubbs and Lelito at G with a stud C in the middle with Stief and Armstead at T with a young G in the wings waiting as the swing man. I would be a little careful about replacing the entire O-line at once. Evans I feel is done, he has given us many great years as a Saint but the battle scars and age caught up to a once dominating G, it happens. This way your line stays stout and next draft you can get a T or G and build slowly.
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Old 01-06-2015, 10:42 AM   #6
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

IMO, Lelito is the answer in the middle. Been impressive every time he plays. Grubbs and Evans both played better with him at center, and the line was better as a whole. That can't be a coincidence. We all saw how terrible Goodwin was - I personally hated that move last offseason and what happened was exactly what I was afraid of.

As for the guards - not sure a drastic move is needed. Evans more than deserves a chance to see if he can get back to his old self and be injury-free. Grubbs is pretty average most of the time, hard to justify his pay.

What I'd like to see is draft a big, tough blue-collar guard/tackle tweener to push both guards, and give Kelemete a good look too. He has promise. If a young guy can win one of those spots, trade the vet for a pick. There are always teams looking for experienced o-linemen when the season starts.

Starting tackles are fine. Strief is a rock, never pretty but always effective. I love Armstead. I firmly believe if he hadn't gotten hurt when he did the season ends a lot differently. We need some depth here - the Armstead injury showed us just how bad Bryce Harris was. We would've been better off putting Strief on the left side when that happened. There was a maddening lack of adjustments to that problem and that's on the coaching.

We have been playing with fire on the o-line for years, not having nearly enough depth and depending on older players to somehow get through a season without getting hurt. But look, Evans is now a year older than Stinchcomb was when he retired, and Stinchcomb was an injury-riddled mess. It's time for SP to take off his loyalty blinders and take a really good hard look at the situation.
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Old 01-06-2015, 11:13 AM   #7
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

Originally Posted by dizzle88 View Post
Grubbs, Evans, goodwin and Strief all need to go

It would be great if we could get something in return via a trade.
Except Strief would be a good swingman on our 2nd string (like he used to be), don't you think?

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Old 01-06-2015, 12:35 PM   #8
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

I don't think Lelito got the playing time ahead of Goodwin because he hasn't picked up the little nuances of playing center. Draft a center and put Lelito at guard............Grubbs and Goodwin need to go.
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Old 01-06-2015, 02:42 PM   #9
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

Originally Posted by Jack Vegas View Post
IMO, Lelito is the answer in the middle. Been impressive every time he plays. Grubbs and Evans both played better with him at center, and the line was better as a whole. That can't be a coincidence. We all saw how terrible Goodwin was - I personally hated that move last offseason and what happened was exactly what I was afraid of.
I didn't mind the move so much as I did Lelito not starting after goodwin was hurt the first time and seeing lelito play much better. Had lelito started from that point on Goodwin would have been a decent backup. Had they trusted Lelito from the beginning I think we could've won another game or two. I'm not ready to give up on evans or Grubbs until we have solid replacements. Payton isn't afraid to start rookies on the line. Just look at evans and nicks at one point. Just cut their salaries a considerable amount and we're golden.
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Old 01-06-2015, 03:03 PM   #10
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Re: Fixing the Saints Part 2: Young Blood on the O-Line

The whole line can used revamp.

Upgrade that line and the DL. We spend to much time neglecting the lines after the SB putting all the money on a QB and sport cars and we haven't spent the money on the trucks that do all the work.
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