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NFL New Orleans Saints

10 Sophomores to Watch at New Orleans Saints Training Camp

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10 Sophomores to Watch at Saints Training Camp

new orleans saints training camp
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

The New Orleans Saints have a number of second-year players looking to light it up at training camp. Whether they are seeking to take their game to the next level or just fighting for a spot on the roster, these guys are ready to play some football. With that in mind, let's take a look at the top ten sophomores to watch when preseason practices get underway on July 25.

10. Rufus Johnson

rufus johnson new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

10. Rufus Johnson

rufus johnson new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Drafted as a defensive end, switched to outside linebacker and now taking snaps as a defensive tackle, Rufus Johnson will be fighting for a spot on the 53-man roster after playing on the Saints' practice squad last year. He is anticipating time at DE in some packages and snaps along the interior of the line in others. The 2013 sixth-round pick's hybrid capabilities make him an intriguing athlete for his second-go at training camp.

9. Glenn Foster

glenn foster new orleans saints
Stew Milne- USA Today Sports

9. Glenn Foster

glenn foster new orleans saints
Stew Milne- USA Today Sports

Foster's playing time was limited as a rookie in 2013, but his presence was felt almost every time he stepped onto the field. His explosiveness off the line made him quite a disturbance to opposing quarterbacks. In 12 games played with zero starts and very few snaps, the defensive end racked up seven tackles, three sacks and a pass defended. He adds toughness and size to the line and should definitely see an expanded role in 2014.

8. Rod Sweeting

rod sweeting new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

8. Rod Sweeting

rod sweeting new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Sweeting will once again be fighting for a spot on the 53-man roster. His quickness, awareness and coverage ability will likely land him back on the team, but he can develop into something more than just a backup. With Keenan Lewis and Champ Bailey set to start, we could see a battle brew between Sweeting and the rest of his competition for the nickel spot. They're really liking this guy down in New Orleans right now.

7. Kevin Reddick

kevin reddick new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

7. Kevin Reddick

kevin reddick new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Reddick led the special teams with 12 tackles and a forced fumble as a rookie and is now in line to be a backup to Curtis Lofton and David Hawthorne at inside linebacker. Hawthorne's position is vulnerable, so we could see a little competition. Reddick's versatility makes him an intriguing athlete at both the inside and as a pass rusher, which could eventually lead him to a starting job. The former college standout will be fun to watch at camp.

6. John Jenkins

john jenkins new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

6. John Jenkins

john jenkins new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

It looks like Jenkins will be starting training camp on the PUP (physically unable to perform) list after undergoing a successful surgery on a torn pectoral muscle last month. He was originally expected to be back with the team for the start of camp but may miss a little time. However, being on the PUP list means that he can be activated at any time. He will be battling with Brodrick Bunkley for the nose tackle job when he returns.

5. Kenny Stills

kenny stills new orleans saints
John David Mercer- USA Today Sports

5. Kenny Stills

kenny stills new orleans saints
John David Mercer- USA Today Sports

After leading the NFL with a 20 yards per catch average as a rookie, Stills is looking to take his game to the next level in hopes of becoming one of Drew Brees' top targets. With only 32 receptions in 2013, it will be interesting to see how much more comfortable Brees is with Stills, with him now being the Saints' No. 2 wideout.

4. Khiry Robinson

khiry robinson new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

4. Khiry Robinson

khiry robinson new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Robinson did not see too many snaps as a rookie, but when he did, he made them account. He may be the Saints' most talented running back, but Pierre Thomas and Mark Ingram have the upper hand with experience. Robinson's explosiveness and ability to truck over defenders is exciting to watch. He's a solid athlete with tremendous upside. An increase in touches is expected, and a breakout year is what New Orleans is hoping to see.

3. Kenny Vaccaro

kenny vaccaro new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

3. Kenny Vaccaro

kenny vaccaro new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Vaccaro has the tools and mindset to evolve into one of the NFL's elite defensive backs. His awareness and ability to stretch the field from sideline to sideline is hard to find in a strong safety. In a secondary consisting of him, Jairus Bryd, Keenan Lewis and Champ Bailey, the Saints may have one of the top units in the league in 2014. It will be exciting to see if Vaccaro can take his game to the next level when camp kicks off.

2. C Tim Lelito

tim lelito new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

2. C Tim Lelito

tim lelito new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Tim Lelito started two games at guard last season as a rookie, but 2014 will be a bit different. With the departure of Brian de la Puente, the former UDFA is set to start at center. He practiced most of last season at the position, but playing in a real, live game will obviously be more challenging. Drew Brees needs the best the team has to offer to block for him and snap the ball. Camp will help determine whether or not Lelito is that guy.

1. LT Terron Armstead

terron armstead new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

1. LT Terron Armstead

terron armstead new orleans saints
Derick E. Hingle- USA Today Sports

Like Lelito, Armstead will be entering the new season as a starter with very little NFL experience under his belt. He falls at No. 1 because of his importance as a blocker on Drew Brees' blindside. Armstead's nimble movements and strength on the line could make him into a solid option for the long haul, but the first step will be a full training camp with the first string. Brees is the team's most prized possession and his protection is crucial.