No one has accused the Ryan bros of being shy about hyping up their players to the media. That’s exactly what New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, that boisterous silver lion, did after a recent training camp practice, talking in absolutes when it came to the prized free agent joining his secondary.
“I’m so excited about Keenan Lewis — everything about him since the day we signed him,” Ryan said, via the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “He’s got so much ability. The sky is the limit for this guy. He’s going to be fantastic for us. We’re so excited about him. He’s smart, he’s tough, he’s long. And he’s a local hero. You’ve got to love this guy. In my opinion, I honestly feel we got the best free agent out there on defense.”
Hey, nothing wrong in feeling positive about the cornerback Saints general manager Mickey Loomis gave a five-year, $26 million contract to his offseason. Truthfully, he’s probably the best cornerback New Orleans has had in the Drew Brees area. Saints fans must also be breathing a sigh of relief after watching this franchise get killed by their neglect of the secondary last season, which helped this defense allow a league-record yardage total. First-round rookie safety Kenny Vaccaro should also help with that greatly.
After a breakout 2012 campaign where Lewis led all cornerbacks in passes defensed, he should only get better at age 27. But the best free-agent addition when it comes to immediate defensive impact in 2013 is probably Pro Football Focus’ top graded corner from last season, the Seattle Seahawks signing Antoine Winfield.