New Orleans Saints: Center Matt Tennant Is The Long-Term Answer

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Even after Ryan departed to the NFL, Tennant remained consistent and received the honor of being voted team captain and Second Team All-American his senior season.

Jonathan Goodwin has been a very good center for the Saints over the past few seasons, no doubt. But Goodwin will be turning 33 this season and there was simply no way the Saints were ever going to sign him to the three-year deal the 49ers gave him.

Tennant was drafted with the purpose of being the heir to Goodwin’s throne. He sat all of last season and learned behind Goodwin, knowing that his day would come.

His quote in the Times-Picayune was most telling, “Right now I’m the guy. Goodie could come back, and he might not. I have to understand that I could be the starter. I did the same thing last year in case someone got hurt, so it’s not new.”

Tennant has been set on a trajectory to become the Saints’ long-term solution at center, whether in 2012 or now, and he has prepared himself for the task.

The simple reality is that when you have Carl Nicks to your left and Jahri Evans to your right, the transition cannot be as rough as it probably could be. They, along with Drew Brees will prepare and coach Tennant during this transition.

Sure it will be tough and we should not expect an elite player right out of the gate, but if everything goes as planned, Tennant is only 24 and will help to anchor the offensive line long into the future.

And as we talk about the Saints putting together a dynasty capable of winning over the next several years or more, you need an infusion of young talent. Tennant is the type of up-and-comer to provide just that.

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Tags: 2011 NFL Free Agency Jonathan Goodwin Matt Tennant New Orleans Saints NFL News San Francico 49ers