Month: April 2019

Saints Snag some Late-Round Talent with their Final two Picks

Adam Forsythe / April 28, 2019

Leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft, the majority of the Saints’ draft capital resided in the later rounds of the draft, so fans knew that the team would need to find excellent value with those later picks. That is exactly what the Saints did.

With the team’s first of two seventh-round picks (No. 231) the Saints selected former Notre Dame tight end Alize Mack. Throughout his three season with the Fighting Irish, Mack hauled in 68 catches for 716 yards and four touchdowns. Mack provides the Saints with a highly athletic tight end with great potential. He will likely need time to develop his skills, but luckily he should have that opportunity as the Saints signed veteran tight end Jared Cook in the offseason to become their starter.

With the Saints’ final pick in the 2019 NFL Draft (No.244) the team picked former Idaho linebacker Kaden Elliss. During his time at Idaho, Elliss served as a defensive jack of all trades. He recorded 220 total tackles including 155 solo tackles and 28 tackles for loss. Elliss’ production didn’t end there as he also earned nine sacks. Elliss showed great potential to create turnovers as he intercepted four passes and forced five fumbles during his collegiate career. Elliss could play a unique role for the Saints as his versatilty allows the Saints to be creative with their latest draft pick. Elliss could potentially play a role similar to that of Taysom Hill, but on the defensive side of the ball.

Both Mack and Elliss provide the Saints with quality depth at two of the most important positions. The Saints found tremendous value with their final two picks.

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Saints make their Third Selection in the 2019 NFL Draft

Adam Forsythe / April 27, 2019

After trading up to make their first two selections in the 2019 NFL Draft, the New Orleans Saints stayed put in the sixth round to choose their third player.

With the 177th overall pick, the Saints selected former Rutgers’ safety Saquan Hampton.

During his four years at Rutgers, Hampton displayed great tackling skills as he racked up 167 total tackles including 115 solo tackles and seven tackles for loss, while also recovering a fumble in his senior season. Hampton also recorded four interceptions and 20 pass deflections.

Hampton will likely find a role on special teams for the Saints while also providing safety depth behind Marcus Williams, Vonn Bell, and the team’s fourth-round selection Chauncey Gardner-Johnson.

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Saints Trade up Once Again to Select their Second Player in the Draft

Adam Forsythe / April 27, 2019

On Friday night, the New Orleans Saints made their first selection in the 2019 NFL Draft. The team traded up and selected one of the top centers in the draft in Texas A&M’s Erik McCoy. As a part of that trade, the Saints also gained the 116th overall pick in the fourth round.

On Saturday morning, the team decided that they were not finished making trades as they traded the 116th overall pick as well as their fifth-round pick (No. 168) to the New York Jets for their fourth-round selection (No. 105).

With that pick, the Saints elected to pick one of the top defensive backs in the draft, safety Chauncey Gardner-Johnson. The Florida product was consistently given a 2nd-round grade by many draft analysts, yet, he fell down to the fourth round.

Gardner-Johnson was truly a steal for the Saints in the fourth round and his production at the collegiate level was phenomenal. Through his three years at Florida, he caught nine interceptions, returned three of those for touchdowns, recorded four sacks, and made 161 total tackles including 15.5 tackles for loss.

The former Florida Gator provides the Saints with a versatile addition to their defensive secondary. Gardner-Johnson joins Marcus Williams and Vonn Bell to create a dynamic trio of young safeties. He should provide instant production for the black and gold.

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Saints had a much higher grade on Erik McCoy

Chris Nalls/April 27, 2019

The New Orleans Saints were in need of a center after the retirement of Max Unger came in the offseason. The Saints signed center Nick Easton from the Minnesota Vikings who possesses versatility as a center and can play guard if need be but the Saints wanted more depth at that position.

In Fridays round two of the NFL draft, the Saints made their first selection and got their center in former Texas A&M offensive lineman Erik McCoy.

“I think specifically, we probably had a real early two on him. But yes, we were pretty confident that he wasn’t going to be available if we stood pat” said Payton. Saints made a trade with the Miami Dolphins to move up from 62 to 48 to select McCoy.

The overall trade details that allowed the Saints to select McCoy, included moving up from 62 to 48th overall and the 116th pick from Miami and the Dolphins receiving the 62nd pick (which was dealt to the Arizona Cardinals in the Josh Rosen trade), 202nd pick, and a 2020 second round pick from New Orleans.

Overall the Saints got what they wanted and still have more picks in this year’s draft which is turning out to be some talented players falling in the later rounds. Will, the next Saints pick be a wide receiver next?

 

 

 

Saints Trade up to Select one of their Favorite Players in the 2019 Draft Class

Adam Forsythe / April 26, 2019

When Max Unger suddenly announced his retirement this offseason, center quickly became a position of need for the New Orleans Saints. The team signed former Minnesota Vikings’ center/guard Nick Easton soon after learning about Unger’s decision. However, the Saints still had their eyes on an intriguing prospect in the 2019 NFL draft class.

Former Texas A&M center Erik McCoy was one of the highest regarded rookies in this year’s class, especially by the Saints. With their first pick being at 62nd overall near the end of the second round, the team knew they would likely need to trade up in order to select McCoy, and that’s exactly what they did.

The Saints traded the 62nd overall pick, a 6th-round pick this year (No. 202), and their 2020 2nd-round selection to the Miami Dolphins for the 48th overall pick and a fourth-round pick (No. 116), and with that 48th overall pick, the Saints selected their guy, Erik McCoy.

McCoy may not have been the flashy pick that many fans were expecting, but he was a smart decision. McCoy only allowed one sack in 1,528 career pass-blocking snaps over three years at Texas A&M. That seems like the exact type of player that the Saints want to protect aging quarterback Drew Brees.

McCoy and Easton are likely to compete in a battle for the starting center position during training camp. However, I believe McCoy will win that battle and become the team’s starting center while Easton becomes a versatile depth player similar to the way that the Saints used Senio Kelemete during his time with the team.

Although it cost the Saints a future second-round pick to select McCoy, I believe this was a phenomenal selection for the Who Dat Nation.

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