Inside linebacker was a need for the New Orleans Saints, one they addressed with the 31rst pick of the first round on Thursday night when they selected Stephone Anthony out of Clemson.

Anthony, 22, is a big ILB at 6'3, 243 pounds will have a great opportunity to start as a rookie. He's got great movement skills, plays under control, was a good tackler at Clemson, but must improve his leverage when battling a blocker.

Anthony's draft stock rose after an impressive performance at the NFL Combine. He ran 4.56 in the 40 yard dash and posted a 20-yard shuttle of 4.03 seconds.

"Inside linebacker was a position we wanted to draft," said Saints coach Sean Payton. "We haven't drafted many true inside linebackers in (my) ten years here."

In his 4 years at Clemson, Anthony finished with 255 tackles, 33.5 tackles for a loss and 9.5 sacks.