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New Orleans Saints: Simoneau Put On IR, TE Martrez Milner Signed, DE Jeremy Parnell Moved To TE

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It was almost a guarantee that Mark Simoneau, top backup at middle and weak-side linebacker, would be placed on injured reserve after tearing his triceps muscle during the black and gold scrimmage.

Simoneau did not play a game during the 2008 season after recovering from back surgery and now he will miss the entire 2009 season after the triceps tear and subsequent surgery.

The Saints worked out perennial Pro Bowl linebacker Derek Brooks and journey man linebacker Derek Smith in a effort to offset the absence of Simoneau.

Saints coach Sean Payton has said that the decision to bring in another linebacker is “ongoing”, but no one is in a rush to sign either player.

Tight-ends Billy Miller and Darnell Dinkins are both dinged up. Miller has a knee injury and Dinkins hurt his ankle during the Saints pre-season game against the Bengals.

Add on the fact tight-end Mark Campbell was placed on the injured reserve list with a knee injury of his own, and now the Saints are thin at tight-end until the injuries to Miller and Dinkins pass.

Martrez Milner was brought in to help boost the injury riddled position. Milner played most recently on the practice squad of the New York Giants but has also spent time with the Atlanta Falcons and most likely is no more than a camp body right now.

In the meantime the Saints also moved rookie DE Jeremy Parnell to tight-end, a position were he may have more of a chance to make the teams final roster.

Parnell actually played basketball most of his collegiate career at Mississippi but transferred to football his senior year. Parnell went undrafted but signed with the Saints before training camp, the team has been using him exclusively at DE until now.

At 6’6, 278 pounds, Parnell is a heck of an athlete for a guy his size and given the time could become a beast of a blocking tight end. Considering his basketball background Parnell’s hands should be decent enough to be a threat in the open field, we’ll see where this kid lands.

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