The New Orleans Saints had zero first-round picks, and ended up with just five players in the 2019 NFL Draft. As all of you Falcoholics know, I enjoy making fun of the Saints, and this draft class is a prime opportunity to do just that.
Let’s take a look at which players the Saints ended up with from a Falcons fan’s perspective.
Round 2, pick No. 48: C Erik McCoy
The bad news is that McCoy was a smart pick who fills an urgent need for New Orleans after losing Max Unger to retirement this offseason. The good news is that the Saints had to trade up into the second round to make it happen, giving up a second-round pick and a sixth-round pick in the 2020 draft to do so. McCoy should be an instant starter at a huge position of need, but at least the Saints did mortgage their future a little farther to snag him.
Round 4, pick No. 105: S Chauncey Gardner-Johnson
I regret to inform you that Gardner-Johnson was an absolute steal here. The Saints had to trade up again to select him, moving up 11 spots in a swap with the Jets. They gave up their fourth-round pick and a fifth-round pick this year to grab a safety who wasn’t expected to still be on the board at that point.
Round 6, pick No. 177: S Saquan Hampton, Rutgers
The Saints are stacked at safety, and Hampton will likely be relegated to primarily special teams play with Vonn Bell and Marcus Williams penciled in to start and the Saints’ choice to go with Gardner-Johnson in the fourth round. Hampton isn’t a bad pick, but it is curious to double up on safeties in a year when the Saints had little draft capital to work with.
Round 7, pick No. 231: Alizé Mack, TE, Notre Dame
Mack isn’t a terrific blocker and he had a lot of drops in his final two seasons with the Irish, but he has potential, especially for a seventh rounder.
Round 7, pick No. 244: Kaden Elliss, LB, Idaho
Elliss has great size, quickness, and versatility. Ugh, writing this is not nearly as fun as I thought it would be, because the Saints actually did good work with limited resources in this draft.
Overall Grade: A-
I don’t like this any more than you do.