The Countdown (3 Viewers)

Saint Tex

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Hey, hey, hey, it’s that time, Saints fans. What guido calls the 4th (or possibly) 5th most wonderful time of the year. We just dropped from triple to double digits in the number of days before the season starts, and that means….wait for it….

THE COUNTDOWN!!!!

Here we go on our annual romp through the roster, counting down by jersey number the days until the first game of the Saints season. (Yes, I know the official season starts before the Saints first game this year. Friends of the Countdown can join this chorus: "We Don’t Care." First day of the season to us is Saints first game. Period. This is Countdown policy. Sticklers for technicalities, go be a lawyer.)

The last couple of years I’ve been on the road more and try to stay off strange WiFi. Which means I use my phone as a hotspot for my tablet. Not always the most reliable internet, even in big cities. So others on the board pitched in. Inside job was the first. Last year I threw doing the pics to the board. That led to the biggest improvement the Countdown has seen when SaintLuke took over the task. He’s got some real skills, and Luke has graciously agreed to be my partner again this year. I am so glad to have him. So a big thanks to Luke, who you will come to appreciate if you haven’t already.

We’ve got some really intriguing additions to this roster, and we are going to cover them one at a time. Before you know it (somewhere in the 50’s or 40’s) it’ll be training camp.

We have a rule here on the Countdown, and it’s one that I intend to enforce. We do not call players camp bodies. These are talented, trained athletes who are working hard and performing at a level that most of us can only ever dream about. And the fact that the Saints think they might play a role on the roster, that makes them our guys. And the ones who are not roster shoe-ins are pursuing a life long dream. We want them to succeed. Like remember a guy named Pierre Thomas? UDFA who beat out a fourth round RB for a roster spot, and proved forever that Sean Payton runs a meritocracy. Plus, the term is dismissive and therefore rude. We are not rude on saintsreport. Andrus set up a family atmosphere where we can disagree but do it in a respectful way. So you are not just free, but welcome to post your legitimate doubts or questions about any player. Just don’t call him a camp body. If you do, you will be asked point blank why you think so. And you will be shunned. You won’t feel it because it’s the internet, but you will still be shunned, and somehow you will not like it. I don’t know how that works. But it does. So play nice.

Now let’s start where we always do, with the big numbers and the big guys.

99 Geneo Grissom 6’ 4” 265 DE Oklahoma

We signed Grissom in the middle of May. He is reported to play all over the line. Our line, especially at DE is set, so it looks like Grissom will be using his versatility (which Payton loves) to make it onto the roster as rotational player on the line. Welcome to New Orleans, Geneo. Can’t wait for you to show us what you can do.
 
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Saint Tex

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44 Darnell Sankey 6’ 247 LB Sacramento State

Sankey has bounced around practice squads, but spent all of last year on ours. We signed him up right before the season and he stuck. So here’s a relative unknown to the rest of us, but our system is sure not an unknown to him, so he’s got a leg up on a a lot of newer players. Like most in this position, he will be looking to make a splash on special teams and as a utility backup.
 
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Saint Tex

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43 Marcus Williams 6’ 1” 195 S Utah

Our second round draft choice from 2017 played better his first year than his second, but we are looking for him to rebound in a big way. He is surrounded by such solid players, and Williams has the skills and the talent to hold down his safety spot. One cool note—in the past two offseasons, Williams has been back at school, and in May, he finished his degree in Sociology. There’s a guy who can see something through. I am thinking another thing he wants to see through is to prove himself in a big way. So go for it, Marcus. You got lotsa folks behind you.
 
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Saint Tex

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42 Zach Line 6’ 1” 233 FB SMU

Our running backs love running behind Zach Line. He was a tailback in college, but he bulked up to play the fullback position for us, and he understands that he will get very few carries, despite having good hands. That’s dedication. Hard to say why we would bring in competition. Line has been so solid and is loved by the guys running into the holes he opens for them. But training camp is all about competition, and these spots where there is only one player—like long snapper—get competition as well. Whatever happens here, we are going to have a great fullback.
 
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Saint Tex

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41 Alvin Kamara 5’ 10” 215 RB Tennessee

Maybe the most fun player to watch, not just on our team, but in the league. Man, is Kamara a player, huh? It’s hard to have enough superlatives. Kamara has two Pro Bowls and an All Pro. And he is only entering his third season. We see what he does on the field—zigging and zagging and making defenses whiff. We have also been treated the last couple of years to a man who refused to be pitted against a teammate. He felt that Ingram doing well means is good for him. ADD to that, as if it’s not enough, the fact that Payton says Alvin’s football IQ is so off the charts that he gets bored when there’s not enough for him to do. He just soaks everything up that he is given. Man oh man, what fun that we’ve got him.

This one is making me ready for the season.
 
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Saint Tex

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40 Nick Moore 6’ 3” 250 LS Georgia

Like I mentioned with the FB position, long snapper will be another camp battle for a spot where there is only one player. Zach Wood has been perfect for us. Snap after snap. But rookie Moore has his own impressive history of perfect snaps in college. Some say this will come down to who blocks best going downfield. The two are virtually the same size with a good resume. I have a feeling the one who doesn’t make our final 53 will be snapped up quickly by another team. Oops. Sorry. That one slipped out.
 

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40 Nick Moore 6’ 3” 250 LS Georgia

Like I mentioned with the FB position, long snapper will be another camp battle for a spot where there is only one player. Zach Wood has been perfect for us. Snap after snap. But rookie Moore has his own impressive history of perfect snaps in college. Some say this will come down to who blocks best going downfield. The two are virtually the same size with a good resume. I have a feeling the one who doesn’t make our final 53 will be snapped up quickly by another team. Oops. Sorry. That one slipped out.
I wonder if someone has told him not to give Sean Payton any financial advice. :p
 
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39 Kayvon Webster 5’ 11” 190 DB South Florida

We signed Webster late in the offseason. He has had some injuries that kept him off the field, but he is known as a solid special teamer and he can back up all the corner positions. With our cornerback corps, it would be hard to crack the starter spot, but somebody who can come in at any spot on any play plus contribute on special teams. That’s a guy you want. And we got him over a couple of other teams. So welcome to New Orleans, Kayvon. Glad you decided to drop in.
 

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