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What to do on the OL?

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Posted 12-07-2007 at 06:20 PM by hagan714
Updated 05-04-2009 at 06:34 PM by hagan714

I am trying to figure out what the saints are going to do in two years. Strief will be a FA in 2009. So I am using this as a timetable in this blog. In 2006 the Saints started rebuilding this unit and I want to see them finish it. We have to much money in the backfield to protect. We are close but how close are we? What additions and what kind of shuffling does this team need to do in order to compete against the elite DL in the NFL. Yes I want to run against the likes of the Vikings and Ravens. I want to continue to lead the NFL in the fewest sacks allowed at the same time.

Without a doubt Brown needs to move back to the RT position next to Evens. The move not only would put our two best run blockers together but it would also lengthen Browns career. Sorry but Brown is not built to be a LT for years to come. He can play it and play the position at pro bowl level but he is a year in and year out pro bowler at the RT position. Our running game would be so much better on the right with these two together. The time Brown has spent at LT will only make him even better at RT as a pass blocker. So what do you do on the left?

Strief is the best backup we have at the tackle position and we need to hold on to him. He plays both RT and LT. Can he start next year? I doubt it. Maybe he will surprise us next year. He has gotten better every year and I really like this kid. So I am not ruling him out at all. He and Brown are the best pure tackles on this team. Bushrod I have not seen play so I can not comment on him. Bushrod was draft with LT in mind. LT is the hardest position in the NFL on the OL so expecting him not to step right in this year would have been crazy. Will he be ready in 2009? We can only hope. Maybe they will plug him next year to get his feet wet as a back up to Brown. Maybe by years end we might have a better idea of were we stand. If the coaching staff has decided already that Bushrod and Strief are top notch back up and will never become the players to bring us to the next level of Elitism for the OL then do we see the saints Drafting a LT on day one of the draft? If they do then this is what they were thinking. Look for the first day pick to step in and play LT on day 1 of the 2008 season and Brown to go back to the RT position. Look for a trade involving Stinch to soon follow. If not, then either Strief or Bushrod will be seeing more playing time next year. Then in 2009 I invision the switch to occure. Brown to RT and Bushrod or Strief to step in at LT.

Who knows the Saints may surprise every one in 2009. Bushrod starts at LT and Steif takes over at RT. Say good bye to Stinch via FA and hello to the draft choices Brown brings.

Now we go inside to the OG position. We all know we are set at RG with Evans or are we really. I am going to say yes. My questions arise at LG. Nesbit has been a very pleasent surprise and is more than servicable as a RG. But he is 30 and yes he can be upgraded. The question arises about Andy Alleman, this years third round pick and his developement. Another small school prospect that is on either a one year our two development plan just like Bushrod. Where does he stand? Like Bushrod he has not played and we can not judge him right now. Why? That is the question that the Saints have not answered. Till then we can only wonder. If the Saints feel he can not start look for them to make a move in FA this year. Some good talent is out there. If not look for Andy to see the field more in 2008.
I wish I could into more depth here but there is not enough players on the roster to bring into the discussion. Goodwin is an option yes but he is a better run blocker than he is a pass blocker. Besides he has not been able to unseat Nesbit as a starter. I am not knocking him at all. I think he is one of the elite backups in the league and would like to see the Saints use him more. But he and Nesbit are the same. Elite Backups if the Saints have an elite OL. Holding onto them would be key if Andy does not devlope as planned. My hope is Andy will be ready and we can spend the money in FA at other positions.

Now that brings us to OC position. Yes there has been much debate about the position on B&G and I have to say both sides have made their points. But in my opion neither is really the option we are looking for. Faine is young and still developing and Goodwin is a seasoned vet that pretty much has reached his ceiling. As for what to do the draft and and FA is not the answer this year so we will have these two around for a while. The only thing that is an option is once again Andy. His college coach once said just before the draft that Andy could make an excellent center in the NFL. I have not forgotten that statement for some reason. So I always wonder if that maybe his calling. Has he practiced the position? I have no idea.

Maybe some one B&G has some insights for me and the rest of us to help see the light here.
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  1. Old Comment
    WhoDat205's Avatar
    I want Faneca. This is my personal mission for the offseason. I will start petitioning the Saints' FO and Faneca personally. If the signing goes thru, you all will have me to thank.

    On Alleman: I personally saw him snapping the ball in Training camp this year. I'm not sure if that's an indication of things to come, but he was definitely being evaluated.
    Posted 12-18-2007 at 12:56 PM by WhoDat205 WhoDat205 is offline

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