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Meachem's Last Stand

I don't know about you but I am only giving Robert Meachem one more year.

Originally I had planned to write some long, well-researched, inspirational post filled with facts, numbers and references that would astound the mind and boggle your brain. But I just didn't know how to work it all out and I just wasn't really feeling it. I've since come to learn that I'm pretty apathetic toward Robert Meachem. I've also come to realize that we don't really need any facts and figures to discuss this topic. There is only one factoidal truth worthy of note regarding this matter: Meachem has been a disappointment thus far given his first round pick status.

Usually, it seems the word "bust" is used most often in relation to Reggie Bush more than any other player on the Saints roster. Understandable (sort of) given his draft position as the second overall pick in the 2006 draft and a college highlight reel the length of Schindler's List. The bar was set incredibly high. But Robert Meachem has got to be considered a better candidate than Reggie for the title of biggest bust currently on the Saints. The truth is, they were both first round draft picks and that does come with a certain level of expectation no matter where in the round they were drafted. Opinions might still vary regarding whether or not Bush has met those expectations but most could probably agree that Meachem most certainly has not.

It's not that Meachem has underperformed, however. Quite the contrary. He gets a pass for his first season - lost due to injury - but looking at his stats from last year reveals that he has actually made the most of his opportunities. Nearly 300 yards from only twelve catches for an average of over 24 yards per catch. Three of those catches were for touchdowns. He was used to run the ball just once, an end around most likely, and gained twenty yards on the play. The problem has been more Meachem's lack of opportunities. Whether that's because he's been slow to learn the playbook or just gotten lost in a crowd of talented receivers, I couldn't begin to speculate. The point is that I expect more than twelve catches a year from a first round selection.

So this is Meachem's last stand. It's do or die time and the former Vol needs to finally make his presence felt on this roster and prove his worth. Otherwise he may find himself looking for a new team next season. But what can we expect from Meachem in 2009? Will this be his breakout season? What has been taking him so long? There are certainly lots of questions surrounding the receiver as we creep closer to training camp. He only has one more year to answer them.