Caleb Farley’s injury could allow him to fall to the Saints at No. 28
The New Orleans Saints have a handful of needs as they enter the 2021 NFL draft, but none will be greater than a No. 2 cornerback, something the team lost when they released veteran Janoris Jenkins in order to save cap space.
Marshon Lattimore will be holding down the fort, but aside from him, the Saints, if they don’t draft a top-tier cornerback, will be putting their trust in PJ Williams or Patrick Robinson, neither of which has shown much consistency production on the edge.
Despite having offseason back surgery, Caleb Farley will be back in time for training camp, and that combination could create a perfect storm for the Saints.
Pro Football Network’s Ben Rolfe noted that Farley is undergoing a microdiscectomy. They said that it’s being “portrayed as fairly minor,” but that may not be good enough for most franchises in desperate need of a reliable cornerback.
Because of his surgery, Farley’s stock could be slipping. While No. 28 could still be a stretch, there’s a chance.
"“Farley was my CB1 in January, but as other corners tested well and Farley underwent another back procedure, he dropped to the bottom of the first. That’s great news for the Saints, who lost Janoris Jenkins in free agency,” CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones said."
Farley is coming out of Virginia Tech after playing just two seasons there. He opted out of the 2020 season. While every prospect could struggle, Farley has just about every tool in his belt to succeed, starting with his big 6-foot-2 frame.
In ten games as a junior, Farley notched 12 passes defended and 4 interceptions. He’s a ballhawk and can cover ground.
“I’ve just got to control what I can control, because at the end of the day I’m going to be suited up this August, and I’ll have the last say to anybody that doubts my health,” Farley said on NFL Network’s Path to the Draft via 247Sports.
The need is there for the Saints, and his injury could be the deciding factor between him or Asante Samuel Jr. for teams needing a cornerback that draft ahead of the Saints. Patrick Surtain will also be a prospect that could leap Farley.
Farley’s collegiate numbers and performances speak for themselves. Accruing 56 total tackles in both seasons, he’ll make a great fit on any team, and hopefully, the Saints will have a chance at him if he falls all the way to the tail end of the first round.