Saints Bubble Boys

Martin Gramatica

By now, some players are locks to make the 53-man roster. Some are definitely not. And some, well, are on the proverbial bubble. Saintsinsider.com handicaps the top players on the New Orleans Saints' current roster that could find themselves employed — or unemployed — on Saturday.

Earlier, I profiled the players that are locks to make the 53-man roster, and the ones that are definitely not. In this article, we'll look at the players that could easily go either way when the final cuts come down on Saturday.

Who will be sweating it out? See below.

PK Martin Gramatica and PK Taylor Mehlhaff.

Why?: It's been one of the best battles of training camp and preseason and the Saints can only keep one. Gramatica and Mehlhaff are perfect this preseason, so the tiebreaker might be which player is more consistent on kickoffs. Gramatica has never been great on kickoffs and Mehlhaff is supposed to have a stronger leg. However, he has struggled at times this preseason.

Will their bubbles burst?: Mehlhaff's will. While the Saints spent a draft pick on Mehlhaff, Gramatica appears to have steadied himself after nearly two years of inconsistency, which cost him his job in Tampa Bay.

DBs Jason David and Jason Craft.

Why?: David became the fall guy for last year's defensive woes, a tag that was only partially warranted. Craft, meanwhile, might be one of the more lightly regarded defensive backs on the team. Both are facing tough battles at their position and both have had solid preseasons. Craft is at a disadvantage in that he's currently listed at third on the depth chart behind Mike McKenzie and rookie Tracy Porter.

Will their bubbles burst?: David's will, but Craft's won't. Sounds strange, but David is still having trouble with deep passes in the preseason and that's an area the Saints can't afford to continue to struggle with. Craft will become a swing corner.

DT Orien Harris

Why?: He may be the team's tackle leader this preseason, but he isn't even listed on the depth chart at NFL.com. But Harris' play has gotten the attention of several coaches, including head coach Sean Payton. With the injury to Hollis Thomas, the Saints may need increased depth until he returns.

Will his bubble burst?: No. Thomas' injury aside, Harris' play has earned him a roster spot.

LB Troy Evans and LB Jo-Lonn Dunbar.

Why?: They're fighting for what appears to be two roster spots, but only one of them will make it. Evans is a seventh-year pro who has served as mostly a role player throughout his career. Dunbar, meanwhile, is a rookie who has shown great upside during this preseason.

Will their bubbles burst?: Dunbar's won't. The Saints will want to keep him for special teams work, plus they love his energy. Evans will be looking for a job.

S Lance Schulters

Why?: The Saints just signed him last week to add depth to the position. He's had just one tackle so far and his learning curve is still pretty steep at this late period in the preseason. He has experience, but he may be coming to the party too late.

Will his bubble burst?: Yes, unless someone comes up hurt in the final preseason game.

WRs Skyler Green, Lance Moore and Adrian Arrington

Why?: It's an awfully interesting race when you consider there's only two spots available. Moore has had a solid preseason, catching 7 passes for 144 yards. Arrington has only two catches for 44 yards. Green has just one catch for 21 yards, but he's a valuable player on special teams. Green can return kicks and punts and has some history with Payton from their days in Dallas.

Will their bubbles burst?: Moore and Green will make it. Arrington, who can't help the Saints as a returner, will be looking for work.


Matthew Postins is the editor and publisher of bucsblitz.com.

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