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Saints Player to Watch: Cornerback Ken Crawley

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Pressed into service last season, many wondered what the heck he was doing out there.

New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The Saints secondary in 2016 was to put it kindly, an under-performing unit. When Ken Crawley was inserted into the lineup early in the season, many fans asked why is he even out there. The answer was simple. Due to the organizations ever present injury bug, there just wan’t anyone else. In his first few games Ken was abused and targeted often. Throughout the year I saw much improved play and technique from this player. Said as much on game threads and several post, and some of you questioned what I was smoking. (For the record, until I can retire or the nation reforms ridiculous laws, it is strictly Marlboro at this time.)

At the end of the season it was speculated whether or not he would remain on the roster or just be another camp body. Competition is stiff in camp this year, yet I expect Crawley to make and be a contributing factor on this season’s unit. Despite being abused by Michael Thomas in red zone drills on Thursday, Ken has had an impressive camp thus far. Crawley is in good company as many of the best cornerbacks in the league are abused by Thomas in the red zone. His coverage has been good, with pass break-ups and interceptions credited to him thus far. With the injury bug already starting to rear it’s ugly head, I think the opportunities for the young cornerback will be plentiful and he is really starting to come into his own in his second season.

The good news is the secondary as a whole looks much better so far in camp. Call me crazy or delusional, but I think one player to keep your eye on is Ken Crawley.