Should New Orleans Saints target ex-LSU star Brandon LaFell?
The New Orleans Saints could benefit from somebody like Brandon LaFell, who was recently released by the New England Patriots.
With both a collegiate national championship and a Super Bowl title under his belt, wide receiver Brandon LaFell might be a hot target in the upcoming NFL free agency period after the New England Patriots released him on Wednesday. The experience with quarterbacks Cam Newton and Tom Brady won’t hurt his stock either.
Following the departure of longtime veteran Marques Colston, a wideout still isn’t the New Orleans Saints‘ biggest need at the moment, but the position should certainly be considered this offseason, whether it’s in free agency or the draft.
Brandon LaFell’s experience could come handy down on the bayou for quarterback Drew Brees, who is set to be throwing to the league’s youngest trio of wide receivers (Brandin Cooks, Willie Snead, Brandon Coleman) in 2016.
More from Saints Free Agency
- 3 free agents Saints could sign for minimum before 2022 training camp
- 4 noteworthy New Orleans Saints slated to hit free agency in 2023
- 7 free agents with ties to the New Orleans Saints
- 3 free agents that could start for the Saints right away
- 3 moves the Saints can make to complete the perfect offseason
Since transferring his talents from LSU to the NFL via the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft, LaFell has been a solid contributor for both the Carolina Panthers (2010-13) and Patriots (2014-15), registering his best season in 2014 during New England’s Super Bowl campaign with 74 catches for 953 yards and seven touchdowns — all career highs. He recorded the first touchdown of the title game against the Seattle Seahawks.
Brandon LaFell began the 2015 season on the physically unable to perform list with a foot injury. In 11 games, he racked up 37 receptions, 515 yards and zero touchdowns. In order to save $2.675 million against the salary cap, the Patriots released LaFell. The re-signing of wide receiver Keshawn Martin was an indicator that the Pats could be moving in a different direction.
With the New Orleans Saints possibly looking to add a wideout following Colston’s release, LaFell should and likely will come at a bargain, even if it’s just a ‘one-year prove it’ kind of deal. While New Orleans was home to one of the NFL’s top offenses in 2015, the red zone production and scoring numbers saw a bit of a dip.
The 6-foot-2, 210-pound LaFell boasts the size, hands and athleticism of a starting wide receiver, and that size could certainly make a difference in the passing and scoring aspect of the Saints’ high-powered offense.
With Brandin Cooks and Willie Snead settled in nicely as top options for Drew Brees through the air, LaFell could come in and compete with Brandon Coleman, who the team has high hopes for as a replacement for Marques Colston, but they can’t be sold on him just yet. Coleman still has some kinks to work out both physically and mentally before taking that next step, while LaFell has already proven capable of a big role.
The New Orleans Saints have many areas they must address this offseason, however, targeting a free agent wide receiver is certainly not out of the question, as Brandon LaFell is just one of several enticing options for the Black and Gold when free agency kicks off March 9. He’s at least worth a workout.