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Is Saints defensive end Cam Jordan knocking on the door to greatness?

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NEW ORLEANS, LA - SEPTEMBER 21: Cameron Jordan
NEW ORLEANS, LA - SEPTEMBER 21: Cameron Jordan /
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The best defensive player on the New Orleans Saints is the ever energetic, high motor defensive end Cam Jordan. Jordan was drafted by The Saints in the first round (24th overall) out of the University Of California in 2011.

In 96 games with the Saints Jordan has compiled 46.5 sacks 191 tackles and 7 forced fumbles.

When New Orleans selected Jordan in 2011 he was among 12 defensive linemen drafted that year in the 1st round. The amazing 2011 class names read like an NFL Pro-Bowl registry: Von Miller, Marcell Dareus, Aldon Smith, JJ Watt, Nick Fairley, Robert Quinn, Ryan Kerrigan, Corey Liuget, Adrian Clayborn, Cam Jordan, Muhammad Wilkerson and Cam Heyward. To name a few.

Out of the class of 2011 defensive linemen — first-rounders only — Cam is ranked 6th in sacks. He trails only JJ Watt (76), Von Miller (73.5), Ryan Kerrigan (58.5), Robert Quinn (54) and Aldon Smith (47.5).

HOUSTON, TX – SEPTEMBER 18: J.J. Watt
HOUSTON, TX – SEPTEMBER 18: J.J. Watt /

Jordan has two Pro-Bowls under his belt and has been a force for the Saints defense since his arrival. But the question is:

Can he take he’s game to even new heights?

Coach Sean Payton fired Bill Johnson who coached the defensive line and brought in a new young/intense coa38-year-oldold Ryan Nielsen from NC State. Nielsen has a reputation of a coach with the ability to get the most out his players. Perhaps he can even help Cam refine or even add something new to his repertoire.

Let’s take a look at Pro Football Focus. They gave Cam Jordan a 92.1 grade after ranking D-Lines and D-Linemen last year. That grade was good for 5th overall. It followed only Rams DT Aaron Donald (95.6), Raiders DE/LB Khalil Mack (93.9), and Bears LB Jerrell Freeman and Eagle DE Brandan Graham (93.3). The article also listed Cam Jordan’s 79 pressure’s on 619 pass rushes. Pretty serious numbers.

From a franchise-historical stand point, Cam Jordan is currently ranked 8th on the all-time sack list. He trails such Saints greats as Rickey Jackson (115), Wayne Martin (82.5), Pat Swiling (76.5), Will Smith (67.5), Frank Warren (52.5), Joe Johnson (50.5) & La Roi Glover (50).

18 Oct 1992: Linebacker Rickey Jackson of the New Orleans Saints works against the Phoenix Cardinals during a game at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona. The Saints won the game, 30-21.
18 Oct 1992: Linebacker Rickey Jackson of the New Orleans Saints works against the Phoenix Cardinals during a game at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona. The Saints won the game, 30-21. /

I do take into consideration that Cam is double teamed a lot. And he always seems to get there only to have the QB slip from his grasp. Would it be fair to assume that this is the year when Jordan explodes past his career best of 12.5 sacks in a season?

Cameron Jordan, the undisputed leader of the New Orleans Saint defense, said: The Saints are ready to win Super Bowl now. He has to elevate his play from very good to great if that’s the case.

I for one know that we haven’t seen the greatest of one Cam Jordan yet. Maybe, just maybe, this is the year when we will see him get to that point.

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