Round 1: Pick 19 – Chris Olave
Like we said, we would have preferred Drake London. But no one’s crying over Ohio State’s Chris Olave as the 19th overall pick.
The future is bright for Olave in the Saints, perhaps even brighter than Pickett, who has a higher chance of crashing and burning. We can see fellow Ohio State alum Michael Thomas taking Olave under his wing and helping him develop into a reliable WR2 by the end of the season.
In 2021, Olave finished with 65 catches for 936 yards and 13 touchdowns in 11 games, and his closest NFL comparison may be Calvin Ridley given his smaller size, fast play, and smooth routes. According to Pro Football Focus, passes thrown his way in college generated a 133.4 passer rating for his entire career, so he has that uncanny ability to make even an average quarterback look good.
Not enough has been said about how Olave often got doubled in games, causing Ohio State teammate Garrett Wilson to get more chances to show his worth as a potential first-round talent.
Wilson is good, but make no mistake, Olave was WR1 of the Buckeyes and he flourished throughout his college career not because of his teammates, but in spite of them.
Using one of two first-round picks on a wide receiver should appease most Saints fans. What may rile some feathers, however, is the fact that Jameson Williams was still on the board at pick No. 19 in my mock. I went with Olave. Don’t kill me.