Glenn Foster getting noticed in New Orleans

AP

As the Saints try to improve a defense that was historically bad in 2012 via a change from a 4-3 to a 3-4 front, they need guys who can make the alignment work.  They’ve found one in an unlikely place.

Undrafted rookie defensive end Glenn Foster, who played college football at Illinois, has three sacks, three quarterback hits, and a forced fumble in two preseason appearances.

He’s playing exceptionally well,” coach Sean Payton said, via Brett Martel of the Associated Press.  “When you get a player who comes in a rookie class as an undrafted free agent and is playing like he is and well enough to make the team, that’s a good deal.

“He is very consistent, explosive.  He was a player, after the draft, that a handful of teams were interested in and fortunately for us we were able to get him.”

“He told me that I had a legitimate shot of making the team,” Foster said of Payton.  “Pierre Thomas, from Illinois . . . he’s here on this team.  I felt confident that I was able to fit into this 3-4 defense.”

Foster, who remains a third-stringer behind Akiem Hicks and Jay Richardson on the unofficial depth chart, gets another chance to stake his claim to a roster spot on Sunday, when the Saints visit the Texans.

The more young, cheap players the cap-strapped Saints can find, the better.  If Foster can make the team and become a contributor, he’ll be under contract at a bargain-basement rate for three seasons, allowing the Saints to take care of veterans like tight end Jimmy Graham, whose rookie contract expires after the coming season.