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Saints Roster Countdown 2014: #27 Champ Bailey and #77 Broderick Bunkley

The Saints are back in camp! The roster has already begun to shift, with a few guys getting added and dropped due to injuries, or whatever the coaches might have "seen on tape" thus far. Here at CSC, we're counting down the days until the Saints head to Atlanta, by taking a brief look at the guys who currently stand on the roster. Today we check out #27 (CB) Champ Bailey and #77 (DT) Broderick Bunkley!

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

As we count down from 50 days until the New Orleans Saints begin their regular season in Atlanta, on September 7th, we're getting to know a little bit about those players who have signed on to bring home another Lombardi trophy.

Today, we take a brief look at two veterans:  cornerback Champ Bailey and nose tackle Broderick Bunkley!

So, with no more ado:

27 DAYS UNTIL ATLANTA!!!

#27 (CB) Champ Bailey (16th year, 1st with Saints)

A 15-year NFL veteran, and member of the 2000’s All-Decade Team, Champ Bailey joined the New Orleans Saints this year, bringing a combination of experience, production and leadership to our secondary.  He was drafted out of the University of Georgia by the Washington Redskins in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft.  Five years later, he was traded to the Denver Broncos, where he proceeded to guarantee his status as a future Hall of Famer over a very productive ten-year career before being released, following Denver's loss to Seattle in the Super Bowl, and picked up by New Orleans.

Bailey has been selected to 12 Pro Bowls, the most for any cornerback in history, and is widely considered one of the best corenerbacks to ever play in the NFL.  Among defensive players, only Ray Lewis and Reggie White have been selected to the Pro Bowl more times, at 13 each.  Overall, he has appeared in 215 career regular season games with 212 starts, totaling 983 tackles (837 solo), 52 interceptions, 235 passes defensed, three sacks, nine forced fumbles and five fumble recoveries. His 52 interceptions represent the most among active NFL cornerbacks and his 235 passes defensed lead all active players. He has also started 10-of-11 career postseason games, recording 34 tackles (30 solo), two interception returns for 105 yards and 10 passes defensed.

Despite his nagging foot injury, Bailey seems to be the lead contender, ahead of Patrick Robinson, to start at cornerback opposite Keenan Lewis.  The Saints coaching staff is largely content to rest the skilled veteran, in an effort to ensure he is in as best shape as possible come regular season.  Anything the future Hall of Famer is missing from a lack of youth is made up for with the level of technical ability of which younger guys dream.  That said, his contract only represents $500,000 in dead money for the Saints this year; so cutting him -- while unlikely -- is not out of the question, unless he is fully healthy.

For more on Champ Bailey, check out Kevin Skiver's article.

Contract:
2 yr(s) / $3,750,000. Average: $1,875,000 per year through 2015.

#77 (DT) Broderick Bunkley (9th year, 3rd with Saints)

Broderick Bunkley was drafted out of Florida State by the Philadelphia Eagles in the first round of the 2006 NFL Draft.  After five seasons with the Eagles, he spent a year with the Denver Broncos before being picked up by the New Orleans Saints in 2012. He was a part of the horrendous 2012 Saints defense, as well as the stellar 2013 defensive comeback.  He averaged just over 21 snaps per game last season, and didn't make much of them statistically; but it has been said that his 24 tackles didn’t fairly reflect his sturdy play in the middle for a defense that surrendered 134.4 less net yards per game than in 2012.

With John Jenkins stepping up and making his case as the future at nose tackle for the Saints, the 31-year old Bunkley took a pay cut to continue playing for the Saints with a lower cap number this year. The eight-year veteran has played in 119 games with 90 starts, and has career totals of 361 tackles (208 solo), 8.5 sacks, nine passes defensed and three fumble recoveries.

Contract:
5 yr(s) / $25,000,000. Average: $5,000,000 per year through 2016.