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Danno 04-04-2005 07:09 AM

Fox Team Report
 
Team Report
**LINK**

Second-year wide receiver Devery Henderson needs a big offseason. The Saints released veteran Jerome Pathon to clear playing time for Henderson as the third receiver. Henderson has great speed and potential, but he struggled to adjust to the pro game last season and was a non-factor. It's time for him to reward the coaches' patience and start to develop into a front-line player. Henderson might be the fastest player on the roster, but his playing time will depend on his ability to master the playbook and catch the ball. Henderson's hands were the main question mark on him coming out of LSU. He struggled with dropped passes in practice and exhibition games as a rookie. At the same time, he showed explosive big-play ability, routinely beating defenders on deep balls. . . .

The Saints would like to add a linebacker in the draft because of the versatility of second-year linebacker Courtney Watson. Ideally, Watson is better suited to play the weak side, but the staff loves his intelligence and leadership skills inside. Because of that, they'd prefer to add a playmaking weakside linebacker in the draft -- perhaps the first round -- and keep Watson in the middle. However, if the top weakside prospects are off the board, they'll look for a middle linebacker in the second or third rounds and move Watson outside.

SCOUTING REPORT: Left tackle Wayne Gandy is no longer a premier player at his position. At 34, he's lost a step and gets by on guile and technique. Gandy has always been a strong pass blocker, where he uses his agility to ward off athletic speed rushers. He's not particularly powerful, so his drive blocking is only average. The Saints think Gandy can play one or two more good seasons before yielding his spot to a younger player.

COMEBACK STORY: Cornerback Fred Thomas wasn't injured physically last season, but he was injured mentally. His mother battled cancer throughout last season, and the ordeal appeared to weigh on him. After signing a lucrative four-year contract in free agency, he lost his starting job midseason and then was beaten out by Jason Craft for the nickel back job. Coaches are hopeful the fearless, competitive Thomas will regain the form that made him a solid starter the previous four seasons. If so, the Saints' secondary will be solid, if not spectacular.

Danno 04-04-2005 07:15 AM

Fox Team Report
 
Quote:

The Saints would like to add a linebacker in the draft because of the versatility of second-year linebacker Courtney Watson. Ideally, Watson is better suited to play the weak side, but the staff loves his intelligence and leadership skills inside. Because of that, they\'d prefer to add a playmaking weakside linebacker in the draft -- perhaps the first round -- and keep Watson in the middle. However, if the top weakside prospects are off the board, they\'ll look for a middle linebacker in the second or third rounds and move Watson outside.
This would mean Derrick Johnson or Thomas Davis in the 1st. Maybe even Burnett. If not I\'m thinking the MLB would be Ruud/Thurman/Mitchell in the 2nd or 3rd. I sure hope it goes this way.

baronm 04-04-2005 08:36 AM

Fox Team Report
 
that sounds about right..I\'d kinda like davis and then in the second get pool..that would be great.
or davis and then ruud.

[Edited on 4/4/2005 by baronm]

WhoDat 04-04-2005 09:19 AM

Fox Team Report
 
Quote:

Left tackle Wayne Gandy is no longer a premier player at his position. At 34, he\'s lost a step and gets by on guile and technique.
I think I said this when the Saints signed him two years ago. Honestly, Gandy worries me more than any other position on the o-line. Hopefully, Stinch can finally step it up this year and take the RT spot... or any of the other utility players... that is, if Riley isn\'t resigned and doesn\'t follow his usual pattern and actually have a great year this year.

Gandy protects Brooks\' blind-side, and given Ole Fumbalia\'s tendency to backpeddle, pull that lame spin move which always goes to the left, and likelihood to drop the ball when hit, I don\'t like Old Man River manning the LT spot.

baronm 04-04-2005 09:23 AM

Fox Team Report
 
Adam terry and wesley britt in the draft...with another second or a third we could get terry and then in the fourth get britt-fill up on d with the other picks.


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