The New Orleans Saints hold seven picks in the 2022 NFL Draft, including two in the first round. What will the organization do with those selections?
Ryan Wilson of CBS Sports did a seven-round mock draft and here’s who he had the Saints spending their seven selections on:
- Round 1: Pick 16 – Trevor Penning, OT (Northern Iowa)
- Round 1: Pick 19 – Matt Corral, QB (Ole Miss)
- Round 2: Pick 49 – Skyy Moore, WR (Western Michigan)
- Round 3: Pick 98 – Alontae Taylor, CB (Tennessee)
- Round 4: Pick 120 – James Cook, RB (Georgia)
- Round 5: Pick 161 – Delarrin Turner-Yells, S (Oklahoma)
- Round 6: Pick 194 – Brandon Smith, LB (Penn State)
With their first two picks, Wilson has New Orleans adding a left tackle and a quarterback, which wouldn’t necessarily surprise anyone. Penning might be better suited for the right side of the line but the Saints already have a right tackle so unless they plan to move Ryan Ramczyk to the other side, Penning would be the left tackle.
Corral is someone the Saints were frequently mocked to early on but it doesn’t feel as though the Ole Miss quarterback will end up going in the first round. He’s not a bad quarterback but the Saints could probably wait until the second round to grab the Rebel signal-caller.
Moore would give the Saints the wide receiver they’ve been searching for. He could pass Tre’Quan Smith on the depth chart as the starting slot receiver and no one would complain about that.
Taylor was once a wide receiver but transitioned to cornerback and that’s the position he’s listed as in the draft. The Saints don’t desperately need a cornerback but depth is certainly something they could afford to add and Taylor would give them just that. He’s also a nice presence to have on special teams.
Running back is an area the team will probably address in the draft due to Alvin Kamara’s legal situation, Mark Ingram being in the last year of his contract, and Tony Jones Jr. not doing much with the opportunities he had in 2021. If Cook is the pick here, he’d give the team a nice RB2/3 for this season and could potentially move into the backup role moving forward.
Turner-Yells wouldn’t be a replacement for Marcus Williams or Malcolm Jenkins but he is able to play in a variety of schemes. The Saints couldn’t count on him to defend tight ends, however, and that’s why, ideally, the team would add a tight end earlier on.
Smith falling this far in the draft surprised me a bit but hey, to each their own. Perhaps a big reason why the Penn State linebacker dropped to the second-to-last round is that he’s going to be a developmental player for whoever takes him. Still, NOLA needs linebacker depth and Smith could provide just that.
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What do you think of this mock draft? Would you be okay with the draft playing out like this?