Nov 15, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive end Vic Beasley (3) after a game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in the fourth quarter at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Georgia Tech defeated Clemson 28-6. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Most important position to draft in the first round: A pass rusher. Bolstering up the pass rush would benefit the secondary in so many ways with all that potential talent. Obviously I still have faith in Cam Jordan and Junior Galette, but adding another guy in there is my first choice. Parys Haralson is not the answer to start opposite Galette, and I’m beginning to drift away from Akiem Hicks — I think he’s better off inside.
Personal selections for both draft spots: Pick 13 – Vic Beasley, DE/OLB, Clemson (if he falls, but a trade up is possible). He’s my favorite prospect in this draft. His long arms and broad shoulders make him very powerful, and he may have the most burst out of any pass rusher in this year’s rookie class.
Danny Shelton, NT, Washington – we could kill two birds with one stone here. Shelton is an animal. He’s big, strong, mean and plays with a rare energy. He’s got the tools to be a disturbance both as a pass rusher and run stopper – two big areas of struggle a year ago.
Randy Gregory, DE/OLB, Nebraska – he’s a risk, but if Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis can find a sense of trust and maturity, his talents are undeniable. He’s lengthy, explosive and plays with an awesome energy and high motor – something the team was missing on defense a year ago.
Pick 31 – Eric Kendricks, ILB, UCLA – one of the most proficient tacklers in the NCAA for the past few years. He’s another guy who plays with a high motor and a ton of energy. My top ranked inside linebacker, he excels at both the run stop and in coverage.
Eli Harold, OLB, Virginia – phenomenal athlete with great burst, stride and strength at the point of attack. I see him as someone who could come in an compete at OLB or DE immediately. Great fit for the Saints’ scheme.
One player you don’t want the Saints drafting: There are a few (Shane Ray, Marcus Peters, Dorial Green-Beckham). If I had to choose one it’d be Dorial Green-Beckham. Why? Simple – I don’t trust him. Because of his character and troubled past, he likely won’t go on the first night anyway. Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if he slides into the third round. Easily the biggest risk in this draft. Payton and Loomis have to know that.
Next: Contributing Writer: Ian Mitchell-Dear