Saints lose DT Thomas to injury

Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas

More than ever, the Saints are going to need a big rookie season out of first-round pick Sedrick Ellis.

With veteran defensive tackle Hollis Thomas going down with a triceps injury that could end his season, the Saints need Ellis to have a big impact in the middle of the defensive line.

Without Thomas, it appears Kendrick Clancy will start at nose tackle and Ellis at the three-technique tackle. But Ellis does have the ability to play the nose and Thomas' injury could prompt some changes on the line.

The Saints do have good depth at defensive tackle with veterans Antwan Lake and Brian Young, and they have high hopes for Orien Harris.

The Saints might not make a decision immediately on whether to end Thomas' season. He'll likely be out for at least two months. Keeping him active would take up a roster spot that the Saints don't want to sacrifice.