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New Orleans Saints 2019 draft outlook: Linebackers

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Much of the significant improvement made by the New Orleans Saints defense in 2018 can be traced to the strong play of the linebacker corps, and much of that can be attributed to one of the league’s top free agent ...

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Old 04-10-2019, 08:37 PM   #1
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Much of the significant improvement made by the New Orleans Saints defense in 2018 can be traced to the strong play of the linebacker corps, and much of that can be attributed to one of the league’s top free agent additions, Demario Davis.

New Orleans blended Davis seamlessly into its defensive scheme, freeing him up to chase down opposing ball-carriers a team-high 110 times in the 2018 season. With Davis patrolling the field, the Saints finished the season with the NFL’s No. 2 rush defense, yielding just 80.2 rushing yards per game.



But it went beyond the strong play from Davis. A.J. Klein (career-high 70 tackles) and Alex Anzalone (three forced fumbles, 59 tackles) both bounced back in a big way from injury-shortened 2017 seasons. The Saints were so well-stocked at the position that Manti Te’o was a healthy scratch for much of the 2018 season.

All three of those players will be back in 2019, along with special teamers Craig Robertson and Vincent Biegel.

While this is currently a position of strength, New Orleans could draft another linebacker to groom for a few years down the road.

LINEBACKERS

Saints depth chart

Demario Davis

A.J. Klein

Alex Anzalone

Craig Robertson

Vincent Biegel

Darnell Sankey

Potential Day 1 (first round) selections

Devin White, LSU

Devin Bush, Michigan

Potential Day 2 (rounds 2-3) selections

Mack Wilson, Alabama

Vosean Joseph, Florida

Terrill Hanks, New Mexico State

Germaine Pratt, North Carolina State

Tre Lamar, Clemson

Potential Day 3 (rounds 4-7) selections

Te’Von Coney, Notre Dame


Drue Tranquill, Notre Dame

T.J. Edwards, Wisconsin

Blake Cashman, Minnesota

Chase Hansen, Utah

David Long, West Virginia

Bobby Okereke, Stanford

Tre Watson, Maryland

Ben Burr-Kirven, Washington

Tyrel Dodson, Texas A&M

Joe Giles-Harris, Duke

Jahlani Tavai, Hawaii

Cameron Smith, USC

Juwon Young, Marshall

Otaro Alaka, Texas A&M

Khalil Hodge, Buffalo

Ryan Connelly, Wisconsin

Andrew Van Ginkel, Wisconsin

Jamal Davis, Akron

Nate Hall, Northwestern

Jordan Jones, Kentucky
more on NOLA

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Old 04-10-2019, 08:37 PM   #2
 
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Re: New Orleans Saints 2019 draft outlook: Linebackers

We should draft Devin White!
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Old 04-23-2019, 06:38 PM   #3
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Re: New Orleans Saints 2019 draft outlook: Linebackers

EDIT: Please see the edit at the bottom.....my bad!
I'm hoping to shore up the O-line with our first pick. After Michael Thomas I actually like the depth at wide receiver and we would probably have to cut someone currently on the team to bring in another wide receiver using a high draft pick.
Some people think Ginn is washed up after spending time side lined with injury and the fact that he's no spring chicken. Others think Meredith is a bust because he got reinjured but when he played he performed well enough for being on the field at less than 100%. Other's think our third round pick Smith under achieved, and he admitted to knowing how to run a route but not why he was running that route or when to break the route off. He should be better with another year in the system as should the rest of our young receivers.

Then there's Kirkwood who has looked good in spurts but at the moment that's all we've seen. Carr and Dural are both huge question marks with good potential once they get up to NFL game speed. Also, there is Simmie Cobbs we poached from someone's practice squad last year that a lot of people are high on.

That's a lot of bodies for Curtis Johnson to develop and time is limited with each player to fully coach them up. It requires a lot of one on one time outside the class room as well as the whoopin' stick during practice. Everyone has been in the system for a full season and it's time to work on the nuances now and continue to develop our young players who already are familiar with the Saints complex offense.

Personally, I believe that Jared Cook is going to take a lot of pressure off Drew Brees and the receivers on third down. This season there will be other threats, whether it's out of the back field or the a wide receiver that has developed in the system. Also, Ben Watson is reconsidering retirement. Now there is a one/two combo I think could put up some good numbers. If not, Hill is reliable while Dan Arnold looks good to me and just needs a little seasoning. Then there is the unknown Garrett Griffin.

I don't know that we need to use a high draft pick unless there is a Michael Thomas clone out there that Sean Payton knows about.

Edit: I posted this on the wrong thread. I took a phone call and opened the wrong page. Sorry for high jacking the thread.

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