The Light Linebacker
Oct 3, 2015; Baton Rouge, LA, USA; LSU Tigers linebacker Deion Jones (45) against the Eastern Michigan Eagles during the second half of a game at Tiger Stadium. LSU defeated Eastern Michigan 44-22. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
I know that linebacker, specifically the weakside spot, is of big importance for the team to improve on within the next few months and there is already a wishlist that fans are looking at.
UCLA’s Myles Jack and Notre Dame’s Jaylon Smith are headlining that list with Jack in the lead by a hair mainly due to concerns over the gruesome knee injury he suffered just in the Fiesta Bowl.
Although reports are that Smith would be ready to go by the beginning of the season, you have to wonder if the Saints would take such a huge gamble on him with the twelfth overall pick, because if they don’t then it’s almost assured that he won’t be there when the team picks in the second round.
On the flip side to that while Jack was considered another option for the Saints in the first round, now it looks like he is sliding up draft boards and may not be available after even the tenth overall pick.
The Saints could very well go with best player available at that point or take a defensive lineman such as Alabama’s A’Shawn Robinson or Eastern Kentucky’s Noah Spence.
LSU linebacker Deion Jones could be a great grab during the second round for the Saints even though just a few weeks ago there was a bit of concern surrounding him when he measured in at the Senior Bowl at 6-1 and only 219 pounds.
Dec 29, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Texas Tech Red Raiders quarterback Patrick Mahomes (5) is sacked by LSU Tigers linebacker Deion Jones (45) in the first quarter at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports
In the physical aspect of it, Jones looked more geared towards a safety position than playing weakside linebacker.
Those concerns melted away as practice and the game unfolded with Jones showing that he can handle the duties at linebacker especially where pass coverage is concerned, which the Saints were lacking in during the past season in their linebacking corps.
If the Saints were to take Jones in the draft, the school of thought would be that he could be utilized in the same manner that the Arizona Cardinals do with Deone Bucannon.
Bucannon(6-1, 211 pounds) was drafted as a safety but plays linebacker for the Cardinals due to his quickness and aggressive nature which is on par with Jones.
Some think that Jones could last until the third round but if he continues to impress teams then he could slip away before then.
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