I wasn’t going to do this, this year, but I couldn’t help it: I’m addicted. These are not my predictions for what the Saints will do, but what I would do if I were drafting for them. (I’d also re-sign Andrus Peat, but he may not want to return to NOLA.) Alas, I don’t have time to write out my thought process for each pick. But I used the top 300 list of The Athletic’s Dane Brugler to provide parameters, with strict rules keeping me within very reasonable ranges of his slotting, so I couldn’t grab a player who probably wouldn’t still be around when each particular pick comes due.  For trades, I used DraftTek’s trade value chart, along with reasonable assumptions of what other teams might be looking for. I had some wilder versions of this, with many more trades, but I stuck with the most relatively unhistrionic version. (At the end, I’ll list some players the Saints got in other versions that I didn’t get here, but won’t bother explaining all those other permutations to get there, including not listing what else I would have had to give up.)

Without further ado, here’s what I came up with:


Saints trade 1-14 and a 2025 7th to Cincy for 1-18, 3-80, and a 2025 5th

Saints draft either OL Graham Barton of Duke or Taliese Fuaga, Oregon State

Saints trade 2-45, 5-150, and 6-190 to Wash for 2-40

Saints at 2-40 draft Roman Wilson, WR, Michigan

Saints at 80 draft Jaylen Wright, RB, Tennessee

Saints trade Alvin Kamara and a 2025 sixth to Arizona for 4-104 and a 2025 3rd

Saints trade 4-104 to Minnesota for 4-108 and a 2025 sixth.

Saints at 4-108 draft Nehemiah Pritchett, CB, Auburn

Saints trade 5-168 and 5-170 to Buffalo for 4-128

Saints at 4-128 draft T’Vondre Sweat, DT, Texas

Saints at 5-175 draft Daijahn Anthony, S, Ole Miss

Saints at 6-199 draft Frank Crum, OT, Wyoming.

Saints at 7-239 draft Ryan Rehkow, P, BYU


Scorecard: Saints began day with nine picks, plus Alvin Kamara, but only two in the first 149. Under my scenario, Saints end with eight picks this year, but with an impressive five in the top 128. Saints lose Kamara and a 2025 seventh rounder and a sixth rounder, but pick up a 2025 third rounder, fifth rounder, and different (Vikings) sixth rounder. (Don’t ask me to explain why I bothered trading back four spots in the fourth round. Just quirky.)

Other players I targeted and drafted in another version of the draft, all still under reasonable rules, but didn’t get in this version, were CB Kool-Aid Mckinstry of Alabama, WR Roman Wilson of Michigan, OL Roger Rosengarten of Washington, and OL Tanor Bortolini of Wisconsin. But I didn’t get a first-round OL in that scenario, and I traded another Saints veteran to get there.

(I also was going to recount highlights of my hits and misses from the past six or seven years, but don’t have time, other than to say I originally had the Saints drafting a number of players who eventually came here and are now on our roster, including Kamara, Tanoh Kpassognon, Kellen Mond, and Equanimeous St. Brown. And I was fiercely desirous of the Saints drafting LB Nick Bolton, who now is a superstar with the Chiefs. Oh, well….)


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