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Young players will battle for Saints’ SLB job

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Dan Parr
Associate editor

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Posted May 01, 2010 @ 2:04 p.m. ET
By Dan Parr

We hear the Saints expect two or three players to compete for the starting spot at strong-side linebacker, which was vacated when Scott Fujita signed with the Browns earlier this offseason. Linebacker was one of the positions the Saints were hoping to address in the draft, but they didn't take a 'backer. Jo-Lonn Dunbar, who started when Fujita was injured last season, and Jonathan Casillas could be two of the top contenders to replace Fujita. The Saints met with free agent Clint Ingram on Wednesday, and he could also be in the mix if he signs with New Orleans.

"It's probably one of the typical competitions that's going to take place between two or three guys. I don't want to specifically rule anyone in or out, but we have some guys that we've drafted and we have some free agents that will all have an opportunity to compete for that spot," head coach Sean Payton said of the position after the draft. "That's exciting to see these younger guys and see how they step up. I know (assistant head coach/linebackers) Joe (Vitt) will do a good job developing them, and that process has already begun; a lot of those guys have played a lot already."


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