The New Orleans Saints have added running back Joe Banyard to their roster after his strong showing at the team’s mini-camp. Banyard has obviously made a strong impression on the Saints because they signed him to a three-year contract. Banyard joins the running back corps made up of Darren Sproles, Pierre Thomas, Mark Ingram, and Chris Ivory. The Saints are plenty stacked at the running back position but that does not mean the rookie will not get a chance to play. Ingram has been battling injuries as of late and the coaching staff might elect to give their running game different looks.
Banyard has good size for a running back as he stands 5’11″ and weighs 213 pounds. During his time at the University of Texas at El Paso he rushed for 1,490 yards and 14 touchdowns. Furthermore, in his senior year he totaled 867 yards with six touchdowns to go along with 12 receptions for 67 yards. Banyard was originally drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars in this year’s draft, but it was the Saints that locked him in for three years.
Banyard will add more stability to the Saints solid running game and there is no doubt he will be developing and learning a lot from the Saints’ current running backs. Banyard could prove to be a valuable asset to the Saints. Given his size Banyard has the potential to do everything; his height will allow him to play receiver at some points. The Saints could use him in the same way that they use Sproles and that would be a luxury for them. This was a great pick up by the Saints and I would look to see an even better running game from the Saints this season.