NFC South: Stock Watch 32510

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Falling

Jamaal Anderson, Falcons defensive end: For those who thought Anderson might be making a full-time switch to defensive tackle, think again. At the owners meeting Wednesday, Atlanta coach Mike Smith said the current plan is to have Anderson do the same thing he did last year -- play defensive end in the base package and slide over to defensive tackle in the sub package. It has been pretty well established in the past few years that Anderson really doesn’t bring much as a defensive end. He did fairly well as a defensive tackle last season, but the Falcons aren’t ready to put him there on a regular basis. Part of that is because they have good starters in Jonathan Babineaux and Peria Jerry and they’re also a little thin at defensive end at the moment. That’s not going to stay that way. The Falcons are going to get a defensive end somewhere early in the draft. I’m not convinced Anderson will be on this roster when all is said and done. Anderson might get one final chance in training camp, but he better use it to show the light has come on.

Rising

Lynell Hamilton, Saints running back: Part of the reason the Saints decided not to match the offer the Eagles gave restricted free agent Mike Bell was Hamilton. He’s not a household name, but he’s well known and well thought of within the Saints' building. Hamilton was New Orleans’ fourth running back last year and he got some playing time. He also has the size (235 pounds) to handle Bell’s short-yardage carries and he comes with very low mileage. His performance in the final game of the season against Carolina might have helped the Saints make their decision. The game was meaningless, but Hamilton averaged 4.8 yards a carry. In a trio with Pierre Thomas and Reggie Bush, Hamilton could end up being a very important part of the New Orleans backfield.

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