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Saints could consider changes at left tackle

James Hurst could replace Trevor Penning on the offensive line.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Saints could be looking to make a change at left tackle against the Houston Texans, per Nick Underhill with NewOrleans.Football.

James Hurst may protect Derek Carr’s blind side instead of Trevor Penning on Sunday at NRG Stadium. With the offense being inconsistent over the last five games, making some changes was inevitable.

When the Saints drafted Penning, they had high expectations. He’s been an unexpected liability in the run game with improved pass protection, but the second year left tackle struggles. Penning may be hindered more by benching him and taking him out of the starting lineup. In his first five starts this season, he has made gradual improvements, which can be seen. However, it may not be enough to keep him as a starter. Risking Carr taking blitzes and pass rushes is detrimental with Penning’s inability to execute the run blocks is a tad bit frustrating.

It’s likely the coaching staff feels comfortable with Hurst holding up without extra help in pass protection. This could allow Hurst to block more running plays which could open up opportunities for tight ends like Moreau and Graham to make more plays as receivers. With Carr recovering from a minor injury, having effective pass and run protection from the o-line is key to getting completion yardage.

What are your thoughts on the move? Can Penning improve to be a better blind side protector for Carr? Let us know in the comments below.

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