Paging La’el Collins?
Dec 30, 2014; Nashville, TN, USA; LSU Tigers guard Vadal Alexander (74) takes the field prior to the game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in the Music City Bowl at LP Field. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
To round out the hometown players for LSU, you can’t forget another hole the Saints need to fill on the other side of the ball and that’s the offensive line.
It absolutely makes me ill that they didn’t even spend a late round pick last year on LSU offensive guard La’el Collins who was a guaranteed first rounder, but slid off draft boards due to being brought in for questioning in relation to a homicide investigation involving his ex-girlfriend’s murder.
Collins was never charged with any crime and essentially cleared, but the damage was done for the former Tiger in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Obviously the Saints weren’t the only team that passed on him, but they rolled the dice and lost out to the Dallas Cowboys who signed him as an undrafted free agent with Collins now a starter on the offensive line at left guard.
They could decide to remedy that by selecting Vadal Alexander to plug in to a unit who has had more shuffling this past season than a deck of cards.
Guard Tim Lelito had his share of ups and downs in 2015 while guard Jahri Evans and tackle Zach Strief are beginning to show the wear and tear of the years gone by.
Dec 30, 2014; Nashville, TN, USA; LSU Tigers quarterback Anthony Jennings (10) rushes against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish linebacker Nyles Morgan (5) as teammate LSU offensive tackle Vadal Alexander (74) attempts to block during the first half at LP Field. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
Alexander had the chance during the Senior Bowl to work at guard and right tackle which he also did during his last three years at LSU.
In one drill he faced off against Alabama defensive tackle Jarran Reed where he was able to hold his own against the bullish defender(notice he’s on the right guard spot in the following video).
The versatility Alexander has is once again a trait that the Saints could use to their advantage to solve the issues that reared it’s ugly head last season that saw quarterback Drew Brees taking more punishment than we’ve ever seen before in one sitting.
Several mock drafts have had the Saints taking a guard in at least the third if not the second round and Alexander could definitely fall into that range as a player whom the Saints could “plug and play” in their starting line-up, in 2016…..