New Orleans Saints, Def, Saints
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2016 Outlook: Do Not DraftLast updated on Aug-04-2016 by Shawn Childs
New Orleans allowed the second highest amount of rushing yards (2071) in 2015 with ball carriers gaining 4.9 yards per run leading to 17 runs or 20 yards or more. If their failure against the run wasn't enough, the Saints also allowed the second highest total in passing yards (4544) with an amazing 45 passing TDs and only nine Ints. Their defensive line delivered 31 sacks. DT Nick Farley should offer a nice balance skill set for the Saints on the defensive line. He has upside as run defender with underlying pass rushing success (11.5 combined sacks in 2012 and 2013). DT John Jenkins looks like a rotational player with the best value coming on early downs against the run. His biggest competition for snaps will come from DT Tyeler Davison was offered no real value In his rookie season after New Orleans selected him in the 5th round in the 2015 NFL Draft. Davison is expected to be an above-average run defender. DE Cameron Jordan was one of the better players in the NFL in his position last year. He finished with10 sacks while playing well in run support. DE Hau'oli Kikaha tore an ACL in the offseason he will miss the 2016 season. His replacement will either come from this year's rookie class or DE Bobby Richardson, who struggled in 2015 after signing as an undrafted free agent. LB James Laurinaitis was a high volume tackle guy early his career with the Rams. His production has faded in the last three seasons leading to risk as a run defender with losing value in the pass rush and coverage. LB Stephone Anthony was pretty much a bust in his rookie season. Anthony was the Saints' second pick in the first round in 2015. Stephone has the size (6'3' and 243 Lbs.), speed (4.56 forty at the NFL combine), quickness (4.03 20 YD shuttle), and strength (23 reps) to make an impact at the next level. Anthony is a playmaker, but his aggressiveness can lead to mistakes as run defender. Stephone needs to improve his vision and patients. LB Dannell Ellerbe has struggled with a lingering hip issue over his last two seasons leading to only seven games played. S Kenny Vaccaro played well in run support with just below league average starting value in coverage. CB Jairus Byrd has some risk in the passing game while grading with a slight edge in the run game. CB Delvin Breaux was one of the top cover corners in the league in 2015 with neutral success defending the run. Breaux made the transition from the Canadian Football League to the NFL last year with surprising success. CB Keenan Lewis missed ten games in 2015 due to a hip injury that required surgery last December. His skill set has been on the decline over the last couple of years. If he struggles, New Orleans has CB P.J. Williams as a third option. He missed 2015 due to torn hamstring after he was selected in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft. Williams has solid athletic ability with upside in press coverage, but his lack of strength (12 reps) will hurt him in the NFL against elite WRs. His speed (4.57) and quickness are below starting CB value, so NFL scouts project him to play safety or nickel corner. His talent offers upside if he can keep his head in the game. This defense has about four to five players that have a chance to be assets. Their risk as the linebacking position set up much of their failure. Overall, it's tough to believe this defense will offer any impact value in the Fantasy market.
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