John Carney was peaced this week, just two weeks after the Saints brought him in to be the starting kicker. Despite going a relatively solid 5 for 6, he missed a 29 yard chip shot last week that would end up looming large in the Saints’ loss. I know I’m a little late to the party with writing about this, but I did want to acknowledge the two significant moves the Saints made this week. Out are Carney and runningback DeShawn Wynn, in are safety Matt Giordano and runningback Julius Jones.
Personally, I still don’t understand the Carney move. Either you have faith in your young kicker Garrett Hartley, or you don’t. If you do, you stick with him through the bad spell and you allow him to battle through his struggles. If you don’t, you stick with the guy who’s hit 5 out of 6 replacing him. The bottom line is that Garrett Hartley is the Saints’ kicker, and Sean Payton should never have replaced him. I didn’t really understand that move when Carney was signed, and I understand it even less based on how short of a leash Carney had. We all know he’s an old player with poor leg strength and a limited future. So why ride the coattails of his ability in the twilight of his career? The release proves the Saints always intended to stick with Hartley long term, but if that was the case, why would they bench him? I guess Payton wanted to send a message to Hartley that regardless of what he’s accomplished, he’ll sit if he plays poorly. I hope the message is received.
As for Jones, well, I doubt he’ll play much. Don’t get too excited about this pickup because the minute Pierre gets healthy I’ll bet he’s a goner. The news of Ivory’s court issues may be why the Saints brought a between the tackles banger in, though, because they’ll need someone to step in if Ivory goes to jail or gets suspended. Giordano is a special teams guy, and with the Saints so beat up at safety he can provide some depth. Giordano will likely play right away on kickoff coverage, and hopefully he can help limit what was done to the Saints in the return game last week (namely Stephens-Howling giving Arizona ridiculous field position).