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Sunday, May 2, 2010
Jaguars GM in talks with Saints' Sharper

By Paul Kuharsky
ESPN.com

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Jacksonville general manager Gene Smith said he remains in conversations that could bring veteran safety Darren Sharper, who starred for Super Bowl champs New Orleans last season, to the Jaguars.

"Darren I think had an exceptional visit here," Smith said. "He sees a great fit, a great opportunity with an ascending team. I'm confident that we can be good for each other."

Joel Segal, who represents Sharper, did not return an email from ESPN.com.

At a Saturday minicamp practice where his team remains unsettled at safety, Smith said Sharper would help build a veteran backbone for a young defense.

The Jaguars added defensive end Aaron Kampman as a free agent and middle linebacker Kirk Morrison in a draft trade. If Sharper also joined the Jaguars, the young defense would have an experienced veteran at each level of the defense to lead the way.

The Jaguars currently have Gerald Alexander, Reggie Nelson and Anthony Smith as their top three safeties. None were consistent performers last year, and Nelson, the team's top draft pick in 2007, is being labeled a bust by some.

Sharper had nine interceptions and seven passes defensed for the Saints in 2009. Jacksonville safeties combined for five interceptions and 17 passes defensed.

Paul Kuharsky covers the AFC South for ESPN.com.