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Five New Orleans Saints who must rebound in 2015

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Jahri Evans

Sep 14, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; New Orleans Saints guard Jahri Evans (73) against the Cleveland Browns during the second quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ron Schwane-USA TODAY Sports

Jahri Evans battled last season, and managed to play in all sixteen games for the Saints. Many questioned his play more than a few times, but some light was shed on why Evans may have had a tougher time in 2014 when the news broke of him electing to have offseason wrist surgery to repair a partially torn ligament.

According to Pro Football Focus, Evans was credited with six of the 29 Drew Brees sacks last season, and also surrendered the most quarterback pressures (34) and quarterback hits (7) on the team. Arguably, a lot of that could be chalked up to the center position, as Jonathan Goodwin was hardly a match for the likes of bigger interior linemen the Saints faced like Domata Peko, Ndamukong Suh and Haloti Ngata.

Evans reworked his contract recently, lowering his salary cap figure by nearly $6 million, and received an extension through the 2017 season. For me, the addition of center Max Unger should help alleviate some pressure off of Evans, and really help him return to his 2013 form – the Evans who gave up only two sacks and four hits. Giving Drew Brees the appropriate time in the pocket works wonders for the New Orleans Saints offense, and Evans is vital to having that transpire.

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