For the first time in what feels like forever, 16 seasons to be exact, the New Orleans Saints will enter an NFL season with someone other than Drew Brees playing the quarterback position. Now, while we can’t officially say that Jameis Winston will fizzle or sizzle or whether or not he’ll beat out Taysom Hill for the starting position (He should though, right?), what we can say is this.
Both men can rest easy at night knowing that the supporting cast is Oscar-worthy. The Saints have an offensive genius for a head coach, Sean Payton, and Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas are both among the best at their respective positions.
With stars everywhere, it’s easy to forget about some of the role players, and that’s why it was great to see some of their role players get some mention.
Saints tight end Adam Trautman gets a well-deserved nod recently.
Though it’s tough to understand how their ranking systems work sometimes, it’s equally as difficult to ignore what Pro Football Focus has to say on the subject of player rankings. Recently Ben Linsey ranked what he sees as the 32 best tight ends as we near the 2021 NFL season and Adam Trautman cracked the list at number 30.
Here’s some of what Linsey had to say on the subject.
"Trautman earned a spot on the PFF All-Rookie team last season despite catching just 15 passes and playing fewer than 500 snaps over the course of the regular season. Part of that is an indictment on the strength of last year’s rookie tight end class, but Trautman did play well in the opportunities he received in New Orleans. That was especially true as a blocker in the run game. Trautman’s 87.1 run-blocking grade on the season led all qualifiers at the position."
Sure, to some of you a ranking of 30 out of 32 names doesn’t seem like much to shout about, but it could have been worse. He could have been left off of the list entirely.
As Linsey mentioned, Trautman hasn’t been a focal point of the Saints offense, but that could change with a new signal-caller behind center. Tight ends are normally a new quarterback’s security blanket, and when called upon, Trautman has been golden.
Those 15 receptions were the result of 16 targets and nine of them went for first downs. He also reached the end zone twice.
In 2021, expect Trautman to be trusted a little more. He’s good in the running game, and that should allow him some more on-field time. This time next year, you should see this list again with 82’s name a little higher in the rankings.