Stanley Jean-Baptiste, an interesting specimen for the New Orleans Saints this summer


The term ‘bust’ has been used frequently by many to characterize the one-year career of New Orleans Saints cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste.  But how can one truly be called that if he hasn’t seen but very little action on the field?

The Saints used their second-round pick of the 2014 NFL Draft to select the Nebraska defensive back.  Initially expected to play a big role on defense for the Black and Gold a season ago, ‘SJB’ did not.  Instead, the 6-foot-3 former wideout would play the role of a developmental piece, seeing time in just four games, recording only one special teams tackle, and often being exposed when he was out on the turf.

So before anybody else is quick to jump the gun and call him a bust, let’s see how this summer shapes up for him, because he could indeed be shipped out if his production doesn’t match up to company standards.  He will have a year of learning the game under his belt, but will also be facing a hefty load of competition.

Keenan Lewis and Brandon Browner are in line to start on the outside.  If all plays out right, Jean-Baptiste could be the first man in on the field for relief.  And I think given Browner’s size and physical play, he is the perfect candidate to help mold SJB’s game.

Browner and Stanley Jean-Baptiste both boast outstanding balance, change of direction and body control to jump routes, while also displaying the necessary strength to knock receivers off their routes, to free up from blockers and to make the proper tackles on ball carriers.  We have yet to see those skills transition into the pros for SJB.

Of course, with two additional corners drafted this year in P.J. Williams and Damian Swann, and a total of eight currently on the roster, the second-year Nebraska product will have to work harder than ever to make the final cut.  Nothing is given, everything is earned, and the New Orleans Saints will make sure that the best player is given the job, no matter the position.

Facing adversity, Stanley Jean-Baptiste will be one to keep an eye on this summer.  While a number of fans have already given up on him, many still have high hopes, including the players and coaches.

The Saints began their early OTAs this week with more to come.  Mandatory minicamp will run June 16-18, followed by training camp, which kicks off July 30 in West Virginia.  My spotlight is on SJB.  May the force be with him.

Next: Stanley Jean-Baptiste should seek mentor in Brandon Browner

More from Who Dat Dish