That Saints are in a very strange position. They are essentially rebuilding with a 36-year-old future Hall of Fame QB. They are loaded with five picks in the first three rounds. It will be very interesting to see what approach they take in this year’s draft. They may be the most unpredictable team this offseason and in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Round 1, Pick No. 13: Devante Parker, WR, Louisville
Marques Colston is aging and Jimmy Graham is gone. As is Kenny Stills. Pairing Devante Parker and Brandin Cooks is a great start to rebuilding an excellent young WR corps. In just six games in 2014, Parker caught 43 passes for 855 yards and five TDs. Parker is a future WR1 in the NFL and would fill a major need for New Orleans.
Round 1, Pick No. 31: Randy Gregory, DE/OLB, Nebraska
Gregory has some major red flags after disappointing at the combine with a failed drug test. If not for Josh Gordon, the former top-five projected pass rusher would not fall this far. Nonetheless, he will be too good for the Saints to pass up on. They really need a pass rusher and at this point his talent is well worth the risk.
Round 2, Pick No. 44: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, CB, Oregon
There will be a number of corners available. Ekpre-Olomu may be the best on the board. If he was two inches taller he’d be a first-round pick. His excellent instincts and versatility make him a very strong prospect. The Saints really need a corner and Ekpre-Olomu has a ton of upside and great value in round two.
Round 3, Pick No. 75: Paul Dawson, LB, TCU
Dawson will be the best ILB available when the Saints pick in the third round. Although the measurables may not all add up, his game film tells a different story. He could be a steal in the third round and earn a spot in the starting lineup sooner-than-later.
Round 3, Pick No. 78: Bryce Petty, QB, Baylor
It’s time for the Saints to start investing in a possible replacement for Drew Brees. Brees may have two years left in him so a mid-round project makes a lot of sense. A lot of people are very high on Petty. Unfortunately for the team that does draft him, he’s going to be pretty awful on the next level. Of all the QBs I drafted projected in the first four rounds, Petty is the worst.