For the most part, the New Orleans Saints already know the things that they want to know about college prospects. But that doesn't make events like LSU's Pro Day, which was held Wednesday, less important.
The information-gathering process is continuous, whether the result is confirmation or discovery.
"A lot of times there's things that you suspect, and it is confirmation regarding the physical attributes or some of the things that we're measuring," said Saints General Manager Mickey Loomis. "But you also get some new information on occasion that you've got to plug into the equation."
The confirmation and plugging at LSU involved 26 prospects, including receiver D.J. Chark, defensive back Donte Jackson and outside linebacker Arden Key.
While Chark, who ran a 4.34-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, and Jackson, who ran 4.32 at the Combine and followed up by running 4.31 and 4.37 on Wednesday, solidified themselves, the 6-foot-5, 238-pound Key posted a disappointing 4.85.
"He's a talented player, and this is part of that process. We'll see what happens," Loomis said. Pro days also present the opportunity for face-to-face interviews with players. The Saints may have at least two opportunities to speak with LSU players.
"That's part of the goal of these pro days, is to grab some time with guys," Loomis said. "We have the advantage with the LSU guys, they can come to our local (pro) day and a number of them will, and that's a lot more about getting some individual time talking with guys, and going through the interview process and understanding some of the off-field things with these guys. So we'll get some extra time with the LSU players at our local pro day that will be valuable."
It's all part of the process in which the Saints attempt to fill offseason needs, including the "musts" listed by Coach Sean Payton at the NFL Annual Meetings in Orlando, Fla. New Orleans attempted to fill several musts during free agency, but that process also is ongoing.
"We got some (filled)," Loomis said. "We're never done, though. You're never done. Things come available that you don't expect and we're constantly evaluating our roster and evaluating what's available and trying to add pieces, just like every team is doing. That's a process that is dynamic, it's not static. We're right in the middle of it."