Man doesn’t 2005 seem like a century ago. This was the final year of the Jim Haslett era and I sure hoped I never had to talk about that era again. The way this draft went pretty much sums up numerous recent drafts for the Saints: One very good pick with little else. Now let’s go through each pick:
Round 1: Pick 13 Jammal Brown, OT
This would be the good pick. I was shocked as anyone when the team traded up (thinking they were taking Derrick Johnson) but this pick turned out great. Brown started at right tackle his rookie season, where he played his college career, but Sean Payton and his staff felt he could be moved to the left side and protect Drew Brees‘ blindside. And they were right. Brown rewarded the confidence from the coaching staff with a Pro Bowl season in 2006. His play did fall off a little bit in ’07 but knee issues may have been the reason. Brown should be the Saints LT for a long time.
Round 2: Pick 40 Josh Bullocks, FS
I really believed Josh would develop into a very good safety in the league, especially in coverage. Boy, I sure seem wrong. The deep balls given up on the corners the past few season are mostly the corners fault but Josh has not helped them at all. He is often out of position and gets fooled much too frequently with play-action and pump fakes. He was regarded as a ballhawk coming out of Nebraska but his hands are made of stone. He hasn’t helped himself one bit with making plays when given a chance and this year will be his forth season he starts (assuming he wins the job again). He has the ability to do a solid job and now the onus will be all on him with the upgrade of the corners.
Round 3: Pick 82 Alfred Fincher LB
Fincher never earned his playing at linebacker where the Saints had a need. The Saints have struggled finding contributors in this portion of the draft in the past few years and Fincher is a microcosm of that. He signed a contract with the Lions this offseason and is expected to compete for a special teams position.
Round 4: Pick 118 Chase Lyman WR
Injuries derailed the career of Lyman. The Saints gambled with the pick being that injuries were a concern with Lyman through out his college career. Gamble failed.
Round 5: Pick 152 Adrian McPherson QB
McPherson had his concerns entering the draft being that he got in trouble while at Florida State for stealing a blank check as well as betting on games. He played 2 seasons of Arena Football before entering the draft. He was very talented but the lasting memory with him is when he got ran over with a golf cart in 2006 by the Titans mascot. He was cut shortly after.
Round 6: Pick 193 Jason Jefferson DT
Jefferson never made it with the Saints but has spent the past two seasons with the Bills.
Round 7: Pick 232 Jimmy Verdon DE
Never made the team.
So, three years later five out of the seven picks are pretty much busts. The first round pick has made a Pro Bowl and the second round pick has had his struggles. I don’t want to write off Bullocks just yet because he does have the potential but by next year there could very well be only one player from this draft on the team after four years. Teams are often searching for bookend left tackles which is why this draft is not a complete failure.
Overall Grade: D