Jun 11, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints safety Jarius Byrd (31) and safety Rafael Bush (25) and safety Kenny Vaccaro (32) during minicamp at the New Orleans Saints Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
After finishing with the 25th-ranked defense against the pass in 2014 the New Orleans Saints wasted no time and made a bunch of moves during the offseason in order to improve a shaky (to say the least) secondary that gave them fits for most of last season.
While it’s true that they suffered multiple injuries, especially at the safety position (Jairus Byrd and Raphael Bush, just to mention a few), they didn’t perform well enough last season and head coach Sean Payton (rightfully) felt that a change was needed.
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First and foremost the Saints brought back Dennis Allen, who spent four season in New Orleans and was the secondary coach in 2008-10. Allen’s official role is “senior defensive assistant” but it’s pretty clear that he will focus on the DBs department. Not only the players but also defensive coordinator Rob Ryan will benefit a lot from this addition simply because with Allen monitoring the defensive backs Ryan will spend more time with the linebackers, another unit of the Saints that needs a lot of help.
Before adding players the Saints parted ways with a couple of cornerbacks who underperformed over the last couple of season: Corey White (with the Dallas Cowboys now) and former first-round pick Patrick Robinson (who signed with the San Diego Chargers). Neither was good enough to play the #2 corner role opposite to Keenan Lewis but the lack of an alternative forced the team to play both White and Robinson there.
Now things are different.
After signing CFL-sensation Delvin Breaux to add some depth general manager Mickey Loomis went into free agency with an aggressive approach and manage to sign (once again) one of the top free agent defenders available, 2014 world champion cornerback Brandon Browner.
But the Saints were far from done: they signed former Jets first-round pick Kyle Wilson to add even more depth before the draft when they draft not one but two cornerbacks. Florida State’s P.J. Williams was selected in the third round while Georgia’s Damian Swann was picked in the fifth round after they traded up to get him.
After this shake-up how does the depth chart look like? Let’s break it down.