He led the team with 12 sacks, the third time in the
Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 2:35 am
An elite NFL defender was finally given a bookend partner in 2018."The Saints pulled off a trade with the Green Bay Packers to move up to the 14th spot in last spring's draft to select Marcus Davenport from U.T.S.A. Though raw , Davenport immediately showed the elite athletic ability and strength to potentially make him a force at the position. A foot injury suffered near midseason forced him to miss a number of games and short-circuited his progress a bit, but he did evolve into a much better all-around player by season's end. Davenport had 4.5 sacks during his rookie campaign, adding 12 quarterback hits and 6 tackles for loss among his 22 total tackles. He possesses a long reach to disrupt an opposing passer's vision, and can beat offensive tackles around the edge with quickness or with strong moves inside. Davenport looks to improve greatly as he learns the nuances of the pro game. Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY SportsAlex Okafor recovered nicely from an Achilles injury that ended his 2017, playing a full 16 game season for the first time in his six year career. Okafor provided excellent run defense and a solid pass rush from the edge, finishing with 4 sacks, 9 quarterback hits, and 5 tackles for loss while recovering a fumble. A free agent signing prior to 2017 that helped fortify the defensive line, Okafor has opted out of the final year of his contract with New Orleans, making him an unrestricted free agent at the start of the league's new year in March. Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty ImagesTrey Hendrickson played in just five games in his second season , after a solid performance as a rookie 3rd round pick in 2017. He didn't record a sack, but did have 4 quarterback pressures. Hendrickson isn't anything special as a pass rusher, but is a good run defender with good length and a non-stop motor. Chuck Cook-USA TODAY SportsIf Cam Jordan played in many other markets, he would be lauded as a surefire Hall of Famer. As it is, Jordan is one of the most versatile and underrated defensive players in the NFL. He led the team with 12 sacks, the third time in the last four seasons he finished with double digit takedowns and the fourth time in his eight year career. He is a constant disruptive force in the opponent's backfield, even while dealing with consistent holds against him that are borderline blatant muggings. Jordan plays the run as well as any edge defender in the league, and even has the athleticism to drop into occasional coverage. He is one of the team's emotional leaders that leads by example, and is the rock of consistency that the Saints defense builds itself around. Brad Rempel-USA TODAY SportsOkafor's pending free agency makes this a position that will once again need addressed this offseason. The Saints have a potentially lethal edge combination in Jordan and Davenport, but must have solid rotational players. Hendrickson is a good complimentary role player , and there remains a possibility that the team could re-sign Okafor. If they don't, then they'll likely bring in a veteran or two via free agency for depth purposes, and perhaps invest a late round draft pick or two. Davenport's development will be the key for this group in 2019. He's already shown frightening potential, and the tutelage of Jordan and Okafor helped him develop into a much more rounded player by season's end. Jordan, Okafor, and Davenport were responsible for 29 tackles for loss, and 20.5 of the team's 49 sacks in 2018. They held the edge against the run extremely well, while creating consistent disruption from the outside. The combination of Jordan and Davenport look formidable for at least the next few seasons, with only quality depth being a potential question for 2019. DEFENSIVE END GRADE = B It was a mixed year for the former first round pick." />Skip to main contentclockmenumore-arrownoyesCanal Street Chronicles homepageHorizontal - WhiteCanal Street Chroniclesa New Orleans Saints communityFollow Canal Street Chronicles online:Follow Canal Street Chronicles on TwitterFollow Canal Street Chronicles on FacebookLog in or sign upLog InSign UpSite searchSearchSearchCanal Street Chronicles main menuFanpostsFanshotsSectionsLibrarySaintsOddsAboutMastheadCommunity GuidelinesStubHubMoreAll 321 blogs on Horizontal - WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections InterviewsNew Orleans Saints SatireWho Dat HistoryCanal Street Chronicles TutorialSaints 2018 Year in Review: Andrus PeatNew,1commentIt was a mixed year for the former first round pick.CDTAsk some New Orleans Saints fans what they think about Andrus Peat , and he’s a versatile, Pro Bowl caliber offensive lineman that represents an essential cog in the offensive machine that is the Sean Payton offense. Ask others and you’ll be told he’s a first round bust and the weak link in an otherwise strong offensive line unit.Maybe they’re both right. Maybe they’re both wrong.As you can see from the stats below, Pro Football Reference liked Peat’s 2018 performance. In thirteen games with the Saints in 2018, Pro Football Reference gives identical “approximate value” scores to both Andrus Peat and Max Unger, the latter of whom played in all sixteen games. On the flip side, you can see Pro Football Focus was not a fan of Peat’s performance (to say the least).Ultimately, Peat was voted into the Pro Bowl for the first time of his career, and is set to enter the final year of his rookie contract in 2019.nAAndrus Peat - At a GlanceApproximate Value: 11 (career high)Offensive Grade: 39.2 (77th)Run Block Grade: 39.7 (66th)Pass Block Grade: 47.3 (77th)Snap Count: 740 (70.41%) on offense & 60 (14.02%) on special teamsTimothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY SportsIn the 2018 postseason, Peat struggled mightily against the Philadelphia Eagles front seven. It’s thought by many that the reason for Peat’s struggles was a broken hand a subsequent surgery that occurred during the Saints’ first round bye in the playoffs.When Peat was healthy, he was an effective blocker in both the passing and run game.Still , with the Saints facing limited cap space in the 2019 offseason, it wouldn’t be a shock to see something done with Peat. Whether that ends up being a restructure, release, extension, or trade, Peat presents one of the few opportunities for the Saints to find additional cap space to make moves to improve the team as it prepares for another Super Bowl run.