What to do about Deuce?

January, 19, 2010
1/19/10
1:11
PM ET
It’s time to take on the question to which no one seems to know the answer: What do the New Orleans Saints do with Deuce McAllister now?

McAllister
I’m not going to pretend to know the answer to that. Coach Sean Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis are probably the only ones who truly know, and I suspect they’ll make their intentions known as the week goes on. The Saints sent out their news release advancing the NFC Championship Game about 15 minutes ago and McAllister still was listed on the 53-man roster.

Maybe that changes before Sunday and maybe it doesn’t. Here are the possible scenarios as I see them:

Keep McAllister on the roster and play him. The Saints signed the veteran running back, who had been out of football all season, to lead them onto the field in the divisional round against Arizona. Brilliant move and no doubt it provided a bunch of motivation for the Saints. Maybe McAllister’s been quietly getting in shape for this for some time and maybe there is something left in his knees. Maybe he can come in and handle a couple of carries against the Vikings.

Keep McAllister on the roster, but don’t play him. Hey, the motivational factor worked against the Cardinals. It would have an impact again, even if it’s as simple as McAllister running onto the field in street clothes.

Move McAllister off the roster. If McAllister’s not in shape and there’s nothing left in his knees, it’s kind of a luxury to use a roster spot just for motivation. The Saints are very guarded about injuries and don’t have to release any information until Wednesday. They might have a guy or two banged-up that we don’t know about yet and that may force them to make a roster move at another position.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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