ALBUQUERQUE NM - NOVEMBER 27: Braylon Broughton #99 Stansly Maponga #90 (C) and Jurell Thompson #16 of the TCU Horned Frogs.(Photo by Eric Draper/Getty Images)
Not long after the NFL Draft reached its conclusion, the undrafted players began to find their new homes. Many players will have the chance to test their talent and make other teams regret that they didn't pick them. Although the chances are slim that an undrafted player makes the final roster, it is surely not impossible, as stars such as Wes Welker and Antonio Gates have already done so. The Saints have brought in their fair share of undrafted players this year and one, Braylon Broughton, I feel has a pretty good shot to overcome the challenge.
The 6'4", 257 pound defensive end began his collegiate career at Texas Christian University in 2008 after he was redshirted in 2007. During his freshman year he only played in three games and recorded just one tackle. In his sophomore season, Braylon began to see more action on the field. He played in 11 games but totaled a mere eight tackles, one of which was for a loss. Braylon blocked a pass and recovered a fumble as well.
In his junior year, he stepped up his play and was able to participate in every game. He recorded 11 tackles, two for losses, broke up two passes, and got his first quarterback sack when the Horned Frogs played Colorado State. His senior season saw Braylon post career highs in all major statistical categories. He once again played in all 13 games and was deemed a starter for five. He totaled 25 tackles with six of them being for a loss; a number good enough to tie him for fourth on TCU. Two blocked passes, two sacks, and a blocked PAT were also tallied by Braylon throughout the season.
As you've probably thought while you were reading this summary of Braylon Broughton's career, his collegiate numbers are certainly not the best. His numbers do not stack up nicely compared to higher rated defensive ends who would record 50 plus tackles in a year. But then again, that is probably why Broughton went undrafted.
Just because he wasn't drafted by a team does not mean he isn't talented though. Broughton showed his speed at his Pro Day when he ran a 4.55 40-yard dash. He has a monstrous frame that is comparable to elite defensive ends such as Justin Smith from the 49ers and Jason Pierre-Paul from the Giants. Along with his size comes strength, as he was able to bench 26 reps of 225 pounds.
Along with Broughton's physical upside, though, he will have to show that he has the pro level skills to match his massive size. The situation with Braylon is a win-win for the Saints. He has time to sharpen up his raw talents and a pick wasn't used to bring him to the team. In a couple of years, I believe that Braylon will be a consistent and dynamic player for the Saints. He has all of the physical attributes required to have great success in this league and his skills will be coached up nicely in New Orleans. Under Spags he will learn a great defensive system and the best of his abilities will be brought to the surface.