New Orleans Saints wide receiver battle brewing on the bayou


One of the most interesting topics when it comes to the New Orleans Saints going into training camp will be the wide receiver position.  Who is going to make the final roster? I’m believe the Saints will stick to five for the final 53-man roster. Obviously Brandin Cooks and Marques Colston are locks for one and two, but who will be the final three to make the cut? As long as Joe Morgan has his head on straight, I think he’ll be safe.  He will help stretch the field with his speed and could see a ton of balls thrown his way with the departure of Kenny Stills.  This leaves two spots left between Nick Toon, Brandon Coleman, Seantavius Jones, Jalen Saunders, R.J Harris, Josh Morgan, Kyle Prater, Lance Lewis and Willie Snead.

Nick Toon has the most experience and is the only one that has been drafted by the Saints.  At times, quarterback Drew Brees and Toon looked in sync, however, there were times when you could tell Toon ran the wrong route and Brees wasn’t happy with him.  It’s his fourth year in the New Orleans Saints system and he could be the guy head coach Sean Payton is thinking will step up for them.

 Next, there is Brandon Coleman, who has the size and build to make it in the NFL.  A ton of hype surfaced from Saints fans last year in regards to him making the roster and getting playing time, but it just didn’t happen.  He dropped balls on occasion during the preseason last year and never really seemed comfortable.  With that said, Payton thought highly enough of Coleman to call him up to the active roster at the end of the year, showing that he believes in the Rutgers product and wants to keep him on the team.  He has all the makeup to be a great weapon for Drew Brees this year.  Let’s hope he puts it all together and has a great camp.

Another receiver that was an undrafted rookie last year is Seantavius Jones.  Most Saints fans seem to forget about him because he isn’t as big as the 6-foot-6 Coleman and did not go to an eye-popping college, but I think he could be one of the receivers that will make the opening day roster.  The 6-foot-3 Valdosta State product looked good in the preseason last year, which was highlighted by a nice touchdown catch against the Tennessee Titans, where a pass interference occurred but he still managed to come down with the football.  The knock on him out of college was that he consistently dropped balls and looked shaky at times.  I can recall him dropping a screen pass in the St. Louis Rams preseason game, but that is it.  Hopefully all his drops are in the past and he can become a consistent receiver for Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints high-powered offense.

Josh Morgan is a veteran receiver who is very intelligent and can lineup at multiple spots.  He has a chance to make the roster, but I think players that were on the team last year with the Saints have the upper hand on him right now.  However, there is still plenty of time for him to impress coaches, which he did quite well at minicamp.

As for Jalen Saunders, I believe he is a wildcard.  I think if he were to make the roster, it would most likely be as a return specialist. We all saw how explosive and dynamic he was as a returner.  The Saints may want to keep him even though they have C.J. Spiller and drafted Marcus Murphy.

Underdogs R.J Harris, Kyle Prater, Lance Lewis and Willie Snead will need to have a very impressive camp in order to make the roster. I’m not saying they can’t — we all know Payton will pick the best players to keep on the team, but it’s going to be an uphill battle for them. I do believe that one of these guys will most likely make the practice squad, and I’m leaning towards R.J Harris.  Harris is an undrafted rookie out of New Hampshire and has shined at minicamp.  I think he has the most potential out of that group.

It’s pretty early to be deciding who will make the New Orleans Saints roster, but as of right now I think it will be Brandin Cooks, Marques Colston, Joseph Morgan, Brandon Coleman and Seantavius, while R.J. Harris is the leading candidate to make the practice squad.  From what I’m hearing, it seems like Coleman and Jones have made some progress since joining the Black and Gold a season ago.  Last year it seemed like they were overwhelmed at times and thinking too much.  Knowing the playbook for a year and being comfortable in the system should certainly help them adapt. Both have a pretty big catch radius and are talented enough to succeed in the NFL.  If these are the players who make the roster, that would mean Brees will be throwing to a first round pick, a seventh round pick and three undrafted free agents.  The New Orleans Saints wide receiver battle brewing down on the bayou will be one to watch this summer.

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