2) Best under-radar addition? LeGere: Saints CB Patrick Robinson The Saints’ often-maligned defense made strides last season and took another step with free-agent signings in the offseason, including their new nickel CB Robinson. The eight-year veteran played his first five seasons in New Orleans after the Saints drafted him in the first round, and he led the Eagles with four interceptions last season. Edholm: Saints WR Cameron Meredith After considering going with a way-under-the-radar choice (Bucs DT Beau Allen), I’ll go with a more known commodity in Meredith. The questions about his physical condition following his devastating knee injury are real, and it’s fair to wonder why the Bears refrained from keeping Meredith on a one-year, $2.9 million tender and how the Saints' pretty modest contract offer to the restricted free agent (two years, $9.5 million) didn’t prompt the Bears to match. But the Saints and Meredith apparently have high hopes for his role. "He's gonna factor in this year,” head coach Sean Payton said. “He's a player that we've got a real clear vision for." Meredith might not be the clear No. 1 receiver he was pre-injury in Chicago, but as a possible No. 2 or No. 3 option in the Saints’ offense, especially working as a big slot receiver, Meredith could help a team that was strangely inconsistent on third downs last season. Gabriel: Panthers DT Dontari Poe When Poe was with Kansas City, he was a difference-making defensive tackle. Last year he signed with Atlanta, and while he played fairly well, he didn’t play quite up to standards. This year he signed with Carolina, which had a need in the middle of its defensive line after losing DT Star Lotulelei to Buffalo in free agency. In the Panthers scheme, the middle of the defense is the key. Poe will replace Lotulelei and actually give the Panthers a little more pass rush in the middle of their D. If Poe can revert back to the form he showed in Kansas City, watch out! AA: Saints S Kurt Coleman Coleman failed to tally an interception, after pacing the NFC with 11 from 2015-16, and became a cap casualty in February. Following Coleman’s release, Ron Rivera praised him for the leadership and identity he instilled in a young secondary. Well, Marshon Lattimore and Marcus Williams have the identity building covered in New Orleans after combining for nine interceptions as rookies. But they’ll benefit from the presence of Coleman, the secondary’s elder statesman and a rebound candidate after a knee injury marred his 2017, as New Orleans attempts to maintain its vast defensive improvements. HA: Bucs DE Jason Pierre-Paul The Bucs were desperate for some pass rush and a player who could help free up Gerald McCoy, and the trade they made for Pierre-Paul is exactly what the doctor ordered. Not only will JPP instantly make McCoy an even more devastating factor inside as teams have to double Pierre-Paul outside, the combination of the havoc those two will wreak together will allow exceptional athletes Kwon Alexander and Lavonte David to run free all over the field and be difference makers as well. A Classic case of one and one, JPP and McCoy, equaling five or six.
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