The New Orleans Saints 2016 ‘Draft Day’ Mock Draft

johnsigler
Apr 30, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announces the number ninth overall pick to the New York Giants in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 30, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announces the number ninth overall pick to the New York Giants in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports /
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Curt Maggitt
Nov 22, 2014; Knoxville, TN, USA; Tennessee Volunteers defensive lineman Curt Maggitt (56) during the first half against the Missouri Tigers at Neyland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports /

Prioritized Undrafted Free Agency:  Curt Maggitt, Linebacker, Tennessee

Curt Maggitt’s career start off brightly but was derailed by injuries in 2013 (knee) and 2015 (hip).  He was productive at both strongside and middle linebacker when given the chance to play and showed off impressive mental acumen as an onfield coach.  Maggitt’s big personality and passion helped solidify a young Tennessee team that needed his help whenever he could give it.

Maggitt has good size for an outside linebacker (6-foot-3, 247-pounds, 33-inch arms) and noteworthy college production, logging 14 tackles for loss in only 19 starts.  He has experience rushing off the edge either from a two-point stance or with a hand in the dirt, so that brings extra versatility.

The trouble is his health.  Maggitt’s young career has been limited by a series of injuries.  In spite of that, his passion is strong as ever and nobody will outwork him.  It’s not likely he gets drafted so that will be just another chip on the shoulder for a talent who has already experienced frustration.  Getting him in the right situation could do his future a lot of good.

Prioritized Undrafted Free Agency:  Quinton Jefferson, Defensive Lineman, Maryland

Life has prepared Quinton Jefferson for adversity.  His freshman year was derailed by a broken jaw from a fight back home, and the married father-of-three decided to forgo his last year of eligibility to pursue a future in the NFL.  He’s known around the scouting community for his even-keeled nature.

A great frame (6-foot-4, 291-pounds, 33 3/8-inch arms) doesn’t tell the whole story.  Jefferson has some surprising athleticism to him (he ran a 4.95-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine) and shows advanced pass-rush technique, using false steps and head pumps to throw blockers off-guard before using his real move; usually a nasty swim move to body opponents before chasing down their quarterback.

He fits best as a pass-rushing three-technique defensive tackle, backing up Muhammad Wilkerson and Nick Fairley while working on his strength and conditioning in year one.  He could play some end behind Cameron Jordan if needed, but that’s not Jefferson’s native position.  Jefferson was inconsistent in college, and combined with a 2014 torn ACL and deep defensive line class he could go undrafted.  If that happens, the Saints would be wise to give him a shot in their summer training camp.  He just may surprise them.

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