Saints: 3 players who will turn heads at training camp
By Kristen Wong
New Orleans Saints who could turn heads – No. 2: Kawaan Baker
The winner of these wide receiver training camp battles will likely take the No. 2 spot, and while we’re not exactly crowning Kawaan Baker, we believe he has what it takes to break into the roster at the very least.
He’s been named the ultimate draft day steal who enters the pro leagues with all the paragon traits of an elite receiver. At 6-feet-tall and 210 pounds, Baker scored 9.08 out of 10 in his relative athletic score, which compares a player’s categories with players who play the same position.
Baker is lightning fast with a 4.41-second 40-yard dash, and he finished his collegiate career with around 1,800 receiving yards on 126 catches with 16 touchdowns.
Everything down to his hand size, which measures to a fairly large 10.5 inches (the same size as Michael Thomas’ hands) suggests Baker is physically and athletically ready for the task of NFL wide receiver.
It’s now time for him to prove he belongs and what better exhibition than training camp? His receiver competitors are the bumbling trio of Tre’Quan Smith, Marquez Callaway, and Deonte Harris who have failed to consistently earn a starting WR spot in last season’s games.
There’s breakout potential in these guys, too, but Baker is the only one with a clean slate: he enters training camp with no previous history with the Saints and will be working that much harder to start off strong and make a reliable impression.
That being said, Baker’s future in New Orleans will hinge on his training camp chemistry with the Saints pro-leaguers, who do have a leg up in terms of tactics and experiences.
Baker’s physical skill set allows him to play a variety of positions from receiver to running back to special teams, but no matter where Payton puts him, he’ll be raring to impress. Baker is the rookie to watch in training camp because he has everything to win and very little to lose.
You want more targets, Smith? You want more minutes, Callaway? Baker will challenge you for it.