Leonardo Bates, LT, University of Louisiana Lafayette.
I met him a few weeks ago, and we talked for a good time. He's from the NOLA area, playing his HS ball at L.W.Higgins in Marrero. He's been the starting LT for the Cajuns, and their pass oriented O the last few years.
I told him how I remembered him from the game vs Florida. My dad called me and excitedly asked me if I was watching the game. I wasnt, so I turned it on for the second half. Bates was more than handling his own against the Gators. I told him I remembered when he got hurt as ULL was about to score in the 4th q (he ended up with an MCL sprain, but braced it up, and started the rest of the season). They settled for a FG, but w/o him, ULL got very/too conservative the rest of the way, and lost on a blocked punt with 13 secs left in the game ( "They were good, but we were better....we had em!") He was very surprised and appreciative about me watching ULL, and his play. I think that led to our extended conversation, where we talked about ULL football, Louisiana college football, and how teams in La are now so talented and competitive against the major college teams. He even told me about some "on the team issues" and a couple of "in the game" battles he's been in.
Though he didnt make the Combine, he remains very confident and is looking forward to his Pro Day. He's heard from 9 teams so far, and "YES!" he said, the Saints are one of them.
On paper, I see him as a 7th/ undrafted FA. Given our needs at OT, if he's available, I could see us giving him a look see.
On a side note, if you're looking for a C/G in the 7th/undrafted FA, there's another local prospect in Patrick Lewis from Texas A&M. He played HS ball at East St John in Reserve. All he did at pass happy A&M was have 38 consecutive starts at C/G. He was the starting center for Manzell last year, and at about 6'1 and 310, he's short, but stout and quick. He COULD be the only OL that Drew will argue that he's taller than!