June 21, 2010

Saints cut starting DE Bobby McCray

The Saints have made a series of major subtractions to the roster in the past three days.

On Monday, the team released starting left defensive end Bobby McCray.

Due a $2 million base salary in 2010 and a $1.25 million bonus on July 1, McCray has been the subject of some off-field negativity.  He was cited in Sean Payton's book as being late for Super Bowl prep meetings including Media Day.

He was arrested for Driving While Intoxicated on December 29 in New Orleans, and refused to submit to a breathalyzer test.  No word yet on whether McCray could face league discipline for the incident.

McCray was two only years into a five year contract. 

The former Florida Gator earned a reputation as an enforcer on the Saints' defense, defensive monster hits in the Saints' playoff run when McCray was the starter for all three games.  His second quarter hit in the divisional playoffs knocked Kurt Warner flat.

However, on the first play from scrimmage in that game, McCray was solo blocked cold by Cardinals TE Jerame Tuman as Tim Hightower ran 70 yards off right tackle.

McCray's hits on Brett Favre in the NFC Championship game drew fines from the NFL.

McCray was second among Saints defensive ends in quarterback hits last season with 10, behind Will Smith with 24, though McCray collected only two sacks and three tackles for loss all season, and none in the playoffs.

McCray was reportedly shocked by the move, but the Saints might have been foreshadowing the move all offseason long.  They added two veteran free agents, Alex Brown and Jimmy Wilkerson, both with starting experience.  Jeff Charleston and tackle/end Anthony Hargrove are also going to figure in to the rotation.

Tall at 6'6 and with good speed, McCray was being tried at outside linebacker in the Saints' minicamp, where he also practiced at starting left defensive end.

McCray and Charles Grant, who combined to start at left defensive end for the Saints last season, have both been released by the team this offseason.

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