Saints free agency: The moves to date and their impact
By Tony Twillie
Taking a look at the moves the Saints have made so far in free agency. What else needs to be done if anything and where they are after the moves they’ve made.
The exciting part of free agency has come and gone. Most of the big names that were moving have moved. The New Orleans Saints had made a couple of signings, but nothing to write home about overall. Definitely not big moves in the overall landscape of the NFL. It’s absolutely fair to say the Saints didn’t get an A grade so far in free agency. But how are we doing? Do we need to be concerned? The answer is, maybe.
However, the latest move (reported, not official as of this writing) having the Saints sign TE Jared Cook will put a little less unease in the hearts of Saints fans. A position we’ve been trying to fill for a couple of seasons now, Cook potentially raises the difficulty of coverage of the Saints offense for opposing defenses.
The Saints opened up by locking up some role players and kicker Wil Lutz. Good grades on those moves. Re-inking guys like Craig Robertson and Chris Banjo keeps your special teams decent and gives you depth. The Teddy Bridgewater re-signing was huge also. It helped to define that position well, keeping us from having to go outside the house for a backup and potentially to not have to worry about drafting a QB in a draft that has few sure-fire QB prospects. As well, they tendered Ken Crawley and it’s likely he’ll be back for depth in the defensive backfield.
The gains were decent if not earth shattering. Latavius Murray is a good big back with potential to be very good in this offense. Malcolm Brown is a run stuffer at the point of attack on the defensive line. He doesn’t grade out much better than Tyeler Davison, but Davison remains unsigned at this point. It was necessary to find a filler there. General consensus is Brown, from the New England Patriots, is a solid pickup for the Saints.
Mario Edwards was another Saints free agent signee. Edwards has made two NFL stops before New Orleans, Oakland and the New York Giants. Injuries plagued him in Oakland, while he was an okay performer in New York. He was drafted as a defensive end but played defensive tackle in the defense the Giants like to run, where their defensive tackles are slightly lighter in weight and quicker off the ball. This was purely a depth move, as there are question marks on the Saints defensive line.