Co-Host of WWL's "SportsTalk with Bobby Hebert & Deke Bellavia," Weekdays 4-8PM
Deke's Game-Day Preview: Saints vs. Dolphins
by Deke Bellavia,posted Aug 29 2013 10:24AM
Noteworthy: This is the final preseason game for both the Dolphins and the Saints. The Saints can finish the preseason with a 4-0 mark for the first time in franchise history. New Orleans was also 3-0 back in 2009 but finished preseason with a 3-1 mark.
The Dolphins are 1-3 this preseason as they have already played four preseason games. The Saints and Dolphins have played each other 20 times in the preseason with Miami leading the series 13-7. The Saints and Dolphins will see each other in the regular season as the two meet in the Superdome on Monday Night Football on September 30.
What to look for
The Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert does think that there are a handful of spots left on the Saints roster. “I think we are all interested to see which wide receivers make the team. We know that Colston and Moore are locks, and I think Nick Toon and Kenny Stills are on the roster already too,” Hebert said.
Of the remaining players looking to make the Saints at the WR position, Courtney Roby, Preston Parker and Andy Tanner are all in the mix. Last week Tanner hauled in two TD receptions in the Saints 31-23 win over Houston.
The shake out at WR could come down to which player or players can stand out on special teams. “Courtney Roby is a proven player on special teams, and Parker and Tanner can also help in that area as well,” Bobby told me. “It’s going to be some hard decisions that have to be made.”
Coach Sean Payton has already indicated that his starting players will not see much action, if any at all. The progression of rookie QB Ryan Griffin should continue as the former Tulane QB should get plenty of snaps after QB Luke McCown gets in the work that Sean Payton deems necessary.
Also the rotation on the Saints DL has been one that has produced some lesser known names that have become guys who the fan base look for. DL Tyrunn Walker, Glenn Foster and Tom Johnson have all had their moments this preseason and during training camp.
Additionally, the continuing process of adding depth at LB is something to look for. If we go by the players that started against Houston, the starting LB's will be Curtis Lofton, Ramon Humber and David Hawthorne will be three of the four starters. But with the team losing Will Smith for the season, the Saints might give some snaps to who will be helping fill Smith's void.
The new-look Saints defense has made a lot of strides since the end of July and now with veteran players like Will Smith not playing and the status of LB Jonathan Vilma up in the air, there will be a lot of new faces in the Saints line-up in 2013.
The bottom line here is to get out of the game fast and healthy. I mean, there is no secret that the final preseason game is the most meaningless game in the NFL each season. Sure there are players that can make that one final push to make the roster, but no star players generally play and the game is one that coaches want to look back on and know that none of their prime time players got hurt.
After the game tonight, be sure and tune in to the Point After as Bobby Hebert will predict which players he thinks will make the Saints 53 man roster this season.