New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton has announced a change at left tackle for this week against the Carolina Panthers. Charles Brown is out and third round rookie Terron Armstead is in. Brown was benched last week and when Payton was asked about it, he said he had seen enough, so the physically impressive rookie gets the call.
Armstead, formerly of Arkansas Pine-Bluff, came onto the scene in a big way when he showed up at the combine. Both in terms of his athleticism, quickness and speed, he was outstanding with a good amount of strength as well. Armstead was a little raw when he was drafted but the tools for him are outstanding and if he can develop, the Saints could have their guy at that spot.
As important as the left tackle position is for protecting Drew Brees, much of what the Saints do seems to be based around the strength of their guards. Essentially, because of Ben Grubbs and Jahri Evans, the tackles on their roster really only have to worry about doing their job and protecting the edge since their guards are so reliable inside.
This is a huge game for the Saints as they take on the Panthers in a game that could decide the NFC South as both teams are 10-4, so there is no better time to baptize a rookie by fire than against one of the best pairs of defensive ends in the league with Charles Johnson and Greg Hardy. It is a big test for Armstead but a huge opportunity for him as well.