All has been quiet on the receiver front this off-season. None were selected by the Saints in this years draft and the team has only picked up one in undrafted free agency. Not surprising, given it's the Saints strong suit and they've had arguably the best receiving corp in the NFL the last four years. So the landscape looks much like it did last year and the training camp battles will be pretty familiar to all of us. The only question is: Will the results be different?
Let's take a look at what we can expect from this years crop of wide receivers during training camp and pinpoint just what to keep our eye on when the Saints put on the pads again. As always, your thoughts, opinions and analysis are more than welcome.
Marques Colston, Robert Meachem, Devery Henderson
No tough decisions and nothing too controversial here. Doubt there will be much disagreement. Devery Henderson has come a long way from the "Droppery" nickname and a time when Saints fans wanted desperately to trade him away. Now I wouldn't trade him for the world. He's an incredible threat and always dependable. I've really started to grown an affection for Henderson this past year. Anyway, he's definitely in the regular receiver rotation this year.
We finally saw Meachem come into his own last year so I expect only greater things this season. And the fact that Marques Colston is included in this group should need no further explanation.
Technically Lance Moore is still a restricted free agent without a contract but it appears both sides have been communicating and Lance will at least be participating in upcoming mini-camp workouts. I'd say chances are good a deal will get done and he'll remain in the black and gold for 2010 though he might make for interesting trade bait with such an abundance of skill at the position. All things remaining the same, he's nearly certain to make the team and hopefully returns to being Drew's go-to-guy.
On the Bubble
Courtney Roby, Rod Harper, Adrian Arrington
This is where all the action is, naturally. All three of these guys have a legitimate shot at making the final cut. As always, Courtney Roby has a serious chance of making the team because of his special teams and return ability. As of right now I've got to say it's Roby's job to lose.
Third times the charm should be Adrian Arrington's motto this summer, who will be entering a contract year and will look to finally crack the lineup. He missed his rookie season with turf toe and showed a lot of promise last training camp; just not enough.
Rod Harper, though, has got to be the guy I'm most excited about seeing in training camp this year after the show he put on last summer. If you remember, Harper consistently put up some impressive numbers in pre-season action. Had he been in training camp with another team less fortunate to have an abundance of quality receivers and he might have actually made their 53-man roster. If last year is any indication, he's a good underdog candidate to steal someone's job.
Matt Simon, Jamarko Simmons, Chris Bell
Simon saw some significant action during training camp last year and showed some flashes of talent if my memory serves me correctly. Enough to earn him a spot on the practice squad. I think he's destined for more of the same, if he's lucky. Definitely not final 53 material.
Simmons and Bell were undrafted and have their work cut out for them with such a talented group of receivers.