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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