Obum Gwacham hasn’t gotten a chance to make an in-game contribution to his new team yet.
But the Saints’ new defensive end is hoping the opportunity comes soon.
Gwacham, a rookie who was claimed off of waivers after the Seahawks cut their sixth-round pick in the final cutdown to 53 players, expected to be inactive for the season opener, but he said last week that he hopes he can help soon.
“I feel like I can contribute on special teams and those third downs, third-and-long situations,” Gwacham said last week. “I’d love to get out there and get after the quarterback.”
Gwacham, at 6-foot-5, 246 pounds, has an edge rusher’s frame and the quickness of a former receiver. The Oregon State product spent the first four seasons of his college career catching passes; coaches asked him to bulk up and switch positions as a senior.
“Speed off the edge, I think that’s one of my biggest strengths,” Gwacham said. “Working with the 3-technique (defensive tackle) and working on some game. Helping us get pressure on the quarterback, that’s what I think I can bring.”
When Gwacham landed on the waiver wire, New Orleans saw an opportunity to grab a pass rusher with plenty of physical tools and a lot of upside.
“the initial thought when we watched him, much like we saw in the Seattle film, is develop him as a pass rusher and develop him as someone that would plug in at the Jack position,” Saints coach Sean Payton said last week.
Now that Cam Jordan‘s playing the Jack position, the spot is tailored mostly for a defensive end.
The Jack can also be deployed as an outside linebacker. Gwacham’s speed and movement skills make him capable of doing both.
“They call it a Jack position here,” Gwacham said. “They called it a Leo position in Seattle, and it’s something of a hybrid between the defensive end and a linebacker. I think it’s perfect for me.”