Monthly Archives: August 2011
At “The U”, the famous motto in the early part of the decade was that they were never forced to rebuild, just reload. And the New Orleans Saints are doing the same thing with two former Miami tight ends, releasing Jeremy Shockey and inserting Jimmy Graham into the starting lineup for 2011.
The maddening inconsistency of Shockey forced the Saints to ultimately release him. For as heralded as the Saints are for their depth and production at wide out, they also like to use the tight end a lot. And Shockey just couldn’t keep up.
In 2008 Shockey (50, 483, 0 TD) was out produced by his back up, Billy Miller (45, 579, 1 TD). In 2009, David Thomas (35, 356, 1 TD) nearly out produced Shockey (48, 569, 3 TD) in about half as much on field time.
So do the Saints really like to spread it around between two different TE’s? Or have they just never had one that was very good? My money is on the latter which is why I think Graham will produce.
Last season the Bengals were 15th best versus the pass in the NFL and the overall defense was 11th best in points allowed. With some key additions this offseason, there is no way both of those numbers don’t improve. Why? Because this past offseason the Bengals have added two former first round draft picks, raising their total in the secondary alone to five.
Here are the principals:
Leon Hall (first rounder 2007)
Pacman Jones (first rounder 2005)
Nate Clements (first rounder 2001)
Kelly Jennings (first rounder 2006)
Jonathan Wade (five year vet)
Brandon Ghee (third rounder 2010)
The veteran led group is loaded with talent and experience. Pacman Jones will start the season on the PUP list due to a neck injury, which is what made the addition of Kelly Jennings from Seattle this week even more important. Adding Nate Clements for WAY less than what the Niners paid him is a move for a premier corner that didn’t get the credit or ”coverage” it deserved. Pairing him with Leon Hall, who has quietly averaged nearly 5 INT’s per year in four years, gives the Bengals one of the best CB duos in the NFL.