Dec 29, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) celebrates with teammate tight end Jimmy Graham (80) following a touchdown during the fourth quarter of a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Saints defeated the Buccaneers 42-17. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Arguably, no one move in the entire football world was more shocking than the Saints announcing that they traded Jimmy Graham to the Seattle Seahawks. You could just literally hear a pin drop at the news. It made many sick to their stomach, while many sat in disbelief. I mean, really? A center?
The Saints sent a fourth round draft pick along with Graham to the Seahawks in return for center Max Unger and the 31st overall pick in the draft.
Giving New Orleans two first round picks on day one of the NFL Draft on April 30 is quite interesting. In so many words, general manager Mickey Loomis stated that he simply used the talent on the offense to make the talent on the defense better.
After getting over the initial shock of the trade made, it still seems a little puzzling. After all, New Orleans traded away their primary weapon on offense. Do you believe the Saints will automatically execute at the same type of level they did last season without Graham in the mix? He drew many different looks from opposing defenses, which arguably freed up players to become available. A year from now, we’ll be talking about this as the smartest or dumbest move in recent memory.
Either way, it looks like it may be the Josh Hill show in 2015. However, the Saints offense will benefit tremendously from Max Unger as a staple in the interior line. Given that he’s healthy, the team will become more of a ‘ground and pound’ type of scheme. It makes sense, after all. Lock up your franchise running back (Mark Ingram), and get the guy who can help make holes for him.
One has to appreciate the value of a center, and Drew Brees has been sacked 66 times over the past two season. For perspective, he was sacked 67 times in his first four years with New Orleans. This was a good move for the Saints.
Final Grade: B-
What do you think of the recent transactions for the Saints? Let us know!
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