Continuing on NFL mock Saints draft, from earlier posts….

Round 2, spot 60. Tylan Wallace, WR, Okla. State. In a draft incredibly deep with WR talent, Wallace will probably still be available at spot 60, and at that spot may be the best value pick of all of them. He’s fast, with a 4.39 40-yard dash, with great route running, amazingly sure hands, remarkable acrobatic abilities to adjust to the ball in the air, and tremendous strength and toughness. One scout compared him quite well with perennial all-Pro Steve Smith. In truth, I was targeting Amari Rodgers of Clemson here, but the more I compared video and other research, the more I liked Wallace better. I LOVE what I see of him.

Round 3, spot 69. Kellen Mond, QB, Tex. A&M. This is my sneakiest pick, because it accomplishes three things at once. First, I think he is an NFL star in the making. Don’t laugh, but he reminds me of Brett Favre coming out of college, with similar size, almost as good an arm, superb scrambling ability, and tremendous leadership ability. Indeed, his college stats were much better than Favre’s, while playing against notably stiffer competition. He won three bowl games as a starting QB and ended his career leading A&M to a top-5 final ranking. He is a dual threat, able to outrun linemen and many linebackers once driven from the pocket, and able to run a read-option as well.

Mond has a tremendously quick release, too, so if his primary target is open, he’ll get it to him before any pass rusher can disrupt him: bank on it.

Second, he can back up Jameis Winston immediately. He is good enough of a leader to step in, in year one, if Winston gets hurt, while learning under Sean Peyton’s tutelage for a year if not. If Winston has a great year and we can’t afford to keep him after this year, Mond will be waiting in the wings. If Winston bombs and we don’t want to keep him, Mond will be waiting in the wings. If Winston stays after this year, Mond can remain a fantastic backup to both him and to Taysom Hill for purposes of any read-option plays Peyton wants to run.

But third is the sneaky part. The sneaky part is that Mond’s abilities with regard to points 1 and 2 would mean that Peyton can be much more aggressive with his use of Hill. I do think Hill is a decent (even if peculiar) QB, but I think he is much more valuable for everything else he can do. If Peyton isn’t worried about keeping him healthy as a backup to Winston, the coach can use Hill on a whole lot more plays, in a whole lot more ways. I would like to see Hill on the field on offense not just on about 20% of the plays, but 50%. Imagine the matchup difficulties that it will cause if Hill (as, say, an H-back), Michael Thomas, Alvin Kamara, and Tylan Wallace are regularly on the field at the same time, with a solid Adam Trautman also on field at TE! Further imagine still using Hill two or three times a game under center, just to keep defenses honest. Further imagine Hill playing every single special teams snap, and with abandon, trying to block punts, maybe even serving as a gunner on kickoffs, using his 4.4 speed and large frame to wreak havoc.

Drafting Mond allows Hill to be more of an every-down player. Mond is therefore two for the price of one.

Round 3, spot 105. Osa Odighizuwa, DL, UCLA. He may not be big enough to be a space-eater who can hold his ground against double-team blocks like the departed Malcolm Brown (letting Brown go was the biggest mistake of the Saints’ off-season!), but this guy has superior quickness to knife between inside gaps, great ability to track the ball and runner, and the leverage skills of the champion wrestler that he was. Great stat: He produced more tackles for loss than total games played in college, while playing mostly inside at DT. I love his nose for the ball.

Continued in post below….

(Prior post was here.)


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