- Pat Yasinskas, ESPN Staff Writer
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Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas
You could kind of see this one building earlier when the Falcons signed veteran tackle Wayne Gandy this morning. Now, the team says rookie left tackle Sam Baker will have lower back surgery on Thursday. The team won't say how long Baker will be out or if he'll be placed on the injured reserve list. But it's not too much of a stretch to at least speculate that Baker's season might be over. Too bad, if that's the case, because he had been having an impressive rookie season.
Pencil in Sabby Piscitelli as the new starting strong safety. With Jermaine Phillips out with a broken arm, Piscitelli is going to get his chance to earn the job and it could end up being on a long-term basis. Phillips is in the final year of his contract and the coaches believe Piscitelli has a bright future. He's been excellent on special teams and decent when he's had playing time on defense.
John Kasay doesn't have an agent, so he's not going to leak the details of his new contract. But it's a pretty safe bet he'll be making in excess of $2 million a year.
Just about every punter and kicker available worked out for the Saints. Interestingly, Todd Sauerbrun, who is one of the most talented punters ever, didn't get a look. Then again, with all the controversy about reported positive tests for banned substances by New Orleans players, the Saints can't afford to even think about a punter who once was reported to be tied to a steroids investigation and once was suspended for using a banned dietary product.