Offseason Blueprint: Saints
New Orleans' projected lineup, cap situation, free-agent and draft targets
John Clayton, KC Joyner, Mel Kiper | ESPN Insider
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With the 2014 NFL scouting combine in the rearview mirror and free agency about begin, Insider's experts have produced the Offseason Blueprint for all 32 NFL teams. Included are each team's front-office priorities, projected 2014 lineup, draft and free-agency targets, cap situation and much more.
This is the Offseason Blueprint for the New Orleans Saints.
What management's to-do list should include this offseason.
1. The offensive line needs to be addressed, starting at right tackle where Zach Strief is an unrestricted free agent. He's not good enough for the Saints to bring him back at a premium rate, but he could end up staying. If he doesn't, they'll be shopping. Charles Brown lost his starting left tackle job during the season to a rookie who ideally could have used more time to develop physically. That position is unsettled.
2. This team is loaded at running back, with the two most expensive players cap-wise being the two oldest at the position (Darren Sproles and Pierre Thomas). Those two and Mark Ingram will all be UFAs in 2015, so the odds are that one of them gets traded or cut (Thomas is the likeliest candidate) to create cap room, get additional draft picks if possible and clear the way for a young player such as Khiry Robinson to get more reps.
3. With Malcolm Jenkins headed for unrestricted free agency, Roman Harper already cut and Kenny Vaccaro ending his rookie year on injured reserve, leadership and playmaking ability on the back end could take a serious hit. This is significant at a position crucial to this particular scheme's success because of how many different ways the safeties are utilized.
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