April 11, 2010

Saints not done upgrading d-line; set to meet with ex-Bucs DE Wilkerson

The Saints have added one new free agent this offseason, defensive end Alex Brown.

Saints GM Mickey Loomis isn't done upgrading the position yet.

The Saints, despite the arrival of Brown, the re-signing of Jeff Charleston and the return of major contributors Will Smith and Bobby McCray, are set to visit with free agent defensive end Jimmy Wilkerson.

Wilkerson, 29, was a highly touted collegian at Oklahoma, winning a national championship in 2000 and featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated in 2001. He entered the league though as a low-round pick of the Chiefs, where he started five games in five seasons with two half sacks in all that time.

He arrived in Tampa Bay in 2008 and in 2009 emerged as a starter for the Bucs, starting 15 games. He's collected five and six sacks in his two Tampa seasons and has improbably turned his career around, though he collected five of his sacks last year in the first five games of the season.

Wilkerson had minor knee surgery in January, and his rehab is a reason that his free agent interest has so far been cool.

He is scheduled to meet with the Saints on Monday and Tuesday in New Orleans, then visit Seattle.

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