Why Does Everyone Keep Talking About The Saints Drafting A Quarterback?
The New Orleans Saints have the 27th overall pick in this month's NFL Draft. It's not as exciting of a pick as a Top 5 pick, but could still end up being used as a pick that changes the fortunes of a franchise's future.
Last year the Saints had a Top 15 pick, where they took Marshon Lattimore at #11, and they found their way back into the first round to take Ryan Ramczyk at #32. Both of those picks were major pieces the Saints used to make the NFL Playoffs this past year.
But are the Saints going to be looking to make the same kind of immediate impact they did last year, or will they use this first round pick to help with their future?
If they're looking for help right now, expect to see a Tight End or Defensive player picked here. BUT, a lot of people have been pushing the idea of finding Drew Brees' successor in the first round.
The name that keeps coming up, former Heisman Trophy winner, Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson...
Drew Brees resigned in the off season with a two year contract, but Brees isn't getting younger, and the team clearly doesn't have his future replacement on their current roster. That's the fuel that's feeding the idea of drafting a quarterback, but we truly don't know if this is an idea that the Saints themselves have, or if this is just a fan idea.
The Saints did take time to host Lamar Jackson during the draft process, so it's possible that the team is actually interested in adding him in the first round.
There is something else we should talk about here. Because there's another element that might make New Orleans comfortable enough to make a "project" pick instead of an immediate impact pick in the first round.
Even though Drew Brees' contract overshadowed everything else, the Saints have actually had a pretty solid off season.
On offense, the team brought back Jermon Bushrod to offer depth a multiple offensive line positions and added veteran Tight End Benjamin Watson back to the roster to solidify the depth at Tight End.
Over on defense, they've done some incredible stuff, that is not getting the attention it should. They added Safety Kurt Coleman from the Carolina Panthers, who has started his last 42 games while in Carolina. As well as linebacker Demario Davis, who they picked up from the New York Jets. Davis is an analytical monster. For number cruncheres, he's an "elite run defender" and his pass coverage is referred to as "sterling". But maybe the biggest defensive addition for the Saints was bringing back Super Bowl cornerback Patrick Robinson.
Robinson was one of, if not THE, best slot coverage cornerback in the NFL last season for the Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles. That's not a one-time performance either, the former first round pick has been playing at an above-average level for his entire NFL career, but Saints fans already know that.
But with all of these additions, to a team that was already a "Super Bowl caliber" team last year, will that afford the Saints the ability to reach for the future in the first round of the draft?
Insert Lamar Jackson.
The Saints are not prepared to trade into the first 5 picks of the NFL Draft (at least that they have shown), so they're not getting one of the top quarterbacks in the draft, but they don't need that. Jackson would benefit from a couple years behind a future Hall of Fame quarterback like Drew Brees with an offensive mastermind as a coach like Sean Payton. Just listen to how the NFL Network frames it:
Would it excited ALL Saints fans? No. In fact, it'd probably make a few mad. But if it's going to work for the Saints, it can't be a bad idea. After all, their draft turned out pretty good last year.