Predicting the Last 5 New Orleans Saints Players to Make the 53-Man Roster
This year's wild NFL preseason—that has been akin to a CW TV drama—consisted of ESPN's schoolgirl-like crush with Tim Tebow, player holdouts, Chad "Ochocinco" Johnson realizing he's not in the current Madden '13 video game, and replacement officials (ugh), there has been something else going on behind the scenes: football.
The New Orleans Saints, as well as the rest of the teams around the NFL, will have to cut down their rosters to 53 players by this weekend.
(Of course there are those players who already have their roster spots on lock, but for the others it's a different story.)
All the offseason preparation, OTA's, mini-camps, the heat-filled practices are coming to an end. Football players around the league worked hard and sacrificed a lot to try and make the final cut. Either their hard work paid off and they made the team or they get cut, possibly closing a chapter in their life, for some.
Nothing personal, it's just part of the business.
Let's take a look at five players I believe stood out and will make the final 53-man roster for the Saints.
It's no secret the New Orleans Saints needed a lot of work on their defense. It was the reason why they were bounced from the playoffs in the divisional round against the 49ers last season.
They needed to create turnovers and pressure the quarterback without sending the entire unit and the team's cheerleaders after the QB.
So after their season ended earlier than expected, the Saints parted ways with defensive coordinator Gregg Williams and hired Steve Spagnuolo.
The Saints addressed the defense a bit with their first and third draft choice, cornerback Corey White from Samford in the fifth round.
White has a great combination of athletic ability and size for a CB.
The Saints will play press coverage under Steve Spagnuolo and White can be a good fit in the system. He has had a good preseason, he showed his cover skills and showed he can create turnovers. White also has special teams abilities.
Corey White can provide the help the Saints are in need of on defense.
Travaris Cadet, the rookie out of Appalachian State, has impressed throughout this preseason (save for tonight's fumble against the Tennessee Titans).
Cadet has outperformed Chris Ivory this preseason, who has has fumble problems, and has show he can bring an explosiveness to the table, similar to Darren Sproles. He showed he has skills in running the ball, receiving and returning.
Cadet can be a major asset to the Saints.
Isa Abdul-Quddus is going into his second season in the league. He made a name for himself in special teams last season with the Saints, becoming one of the team's top tacklers. But, Abdul-Quddus has shown he can bring something more to the table for the the Saints and has impressed so far this preseason at the safety position.
He helped his case for making the roster by forcing his second fumble and stopping a Titans drive. Abdul-Quddus is a play maker and can come in handy in the safety position, especially if there are any injuries as the season progresses.
Three Saints corners pretty much have their roster spots on lock (Jabari Greer, Johnny Patrick and Patrick Robinson).
Marquis Johnson, who worked with Saints' new defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo as a St. Louis Ram, is familiar with Spagnuolo's defensive schemes, and that is a big advantage for Johnson.
Johnson has impressed the Saints' coaches this preseason with his coverage abilities overall, so the Saints need to keep him around for depth and use him in sub packages.
The undrafted defensive tackle out of Tulsa, Tyrunn Walker has had a decent preseason. He has shown his determination and hard work during practices and preseason games.
The Saints recently cut defensive tackle Remi Ayodele, so that move doesn't hurt Walker' chances of making the 53-man roster, especially with defensive end Will Smith about to serve his five-game suspension.
Walker is an intense player with determination who plays with a lot of heart and won't give up on plays. He can be a dominant tackle.
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