Marcus Davenport’s potential release might actually have nothing to do with his talents and everything to do with the player that is primed to take his place. After he went out with an injury last year early, Trey Hendrickson filled in.
Hendrickson ended up recording 13.5 sacks and 13.5 tackles for a loss. He finished second in the NFL in sacks behind just T.J. Watt, tied with Aaron Donald, and ahead of Myles Garrett. The upside of Hendrickson is better than the upside of Davenport.
On top of that, Hendrickson was in a contract year. That means that the Saints are going to have to pay Hendrickson a lot more than they originally intended. That is going to cause them to have to make the choice between Davenport and Hendrickson.
If I was the Saints, I would sign Hendrickson to a contract similar to Davenport’s contract, and then I would release Davenport. It sounds harsh, but Hendrickson proved that he is more valuable than Davenport and should remain on the team.