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Saints' 2014 snap counts: Defense

A look at the New Orleans Saints' defensive snap counts in 2014, per ESPN Stats and Information:

Cornerback: Keenan Lewis 856, Corey White 718, Patrick Robinson 582, Terrence Frederick 182, Brian Dixon 157, Stanley Jean-Baptiste 7

Safety: Kenny Vaccaro 933, Rafael Bush 444, Pierre Warren 386, Jairus Byrd 258, Jamarca Sanford 109, Marcus Ball 89, Vinnie Sunseri 10

Outside linebacker: Junior Galette 759, Parys Haralson 467, Kasim Edebali 167, Ronald Powell 3

Inside linebacker: Curtis Lofton 995, David Hawthorne 705, Ramon Humber 426, Todd Davis 5, Kyle Knox 2

Defensive end: Cameron Jordan 950, Akiem Hicks 693, Tyrunn Walker 286, Glenn Foster 63,

Defensive tackle: John Jenkins 373, Brandon Deaderick 315, Brodrick Bunkley 264, Lawrence Virgil 26

Thoughts:

  • The Saints actually fared pretty well when it came to the total number of injuries on defense in 2014. But losing safety Jairus Byrd and his replacement Rafael Bush obviously turned out to be a pretty big double whammy. … A triple whammy if you count the loss of rookie Vinnie Sunseri, whose own injury made him miss out on the chance to vie for the starting role after Bush went down.

  • The combination of injuries and inconsistent performance led to a total of 13 different defensive backs. Nine of them took turns as bona fide starters in the base package. The Saints need to find a cornerback they can consistently trust alongside Keenan Lewis.

  • The Saints drafted four defensive players (cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste, linebackers Khairi Fortt and Powell and Sunseri), and they played a total of 20 snaps outside of special teams. Obviously that’s a poor immediate return on investment. Or if you're a glass-half-full type, 2014 can be considered a "redshirt" year for all of them except for Fortt, who was released.

  • The rookie I’m most curious about going forward is undrafted safety Pierre Warren, who held up pretty well after being thrown into the fire as a starter down the stretch when the Saints re-signed him off the Minnesota Vikings' practice squad. I wonder where he fits in next year with veterans Byrd, Bush and Kenny Vaccaro, among other possible new additions.

  • No one played every one of New Orleans’ estimated 1,021 defensive snaps, though Lofton and Jordan came the closest.