The New Orleans Saints nailed the NFL Draft on Thursday night and one of their two home run selections was Northern Iowa offensive tackle, Trevor Penning.
Trevor Penning was selected by the New Orleans Saints with the 19th overall pick in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft. NOLA, who desperately needed some sort of help on the offensive line following the offseason departure of Terron Armstead, landed one of the draft’s highest rising stock players.
Penning is a plug-and-play kind of player, which benefits NOLA because that’s what they’ll need him to do. The Northern Iowa product stands at a staggering 6’7″ and is a force to be reckoned with on the offensive line.
Penning is a small school guy, which always raises concerns, but his tape doesn’t lie. Penning is so aggressive that it absurdly stands out on tape. His aggression has gotten him in trouble on the field, as penalties were frequent with him, but it’s something coaching can clean up at the NFL level.
Penning is not just an overall physically gifted offensive tackle, but he’s also so good at the position that he was actually named a finalist for the Walter Payton Award; an award given to the best player at the FCS level in college football.
An offensive lineman being named amongst the best players in a singular branch of college football is wildly impressive, and his hard-working and passion for the sport of football helped him rise faster than many other prospects on this year’s draft board.
New Orleans Saints got themselves a stud with Trevor Penning
The Saints wanted Chris Olave all offseason long, but there’s no doubt in my mind that the reason the team decided to trade for a second first-round draft pick is because of the natural raw talent that Trevor Penning has. Dennis Allen and his staff surely drooled over the film that they saw on Penning and had to have him in the building- which they ensured happened.
Penning is a raw prospect. He is very talented and physical, but he is deemed by experts to have “slow feet” and may not be ready to play left tackle right away for the Saints. While I agree that he does need to be quicker off the snap, he’s certainly more than capable of stepping in right away and forming a nasty tandem with Ryan Ramczyk on the offensive line.
This is a pick that can be viewed as “boom or bust” for New Orleans but getting a project player at a position of need in the middle of the first round who has the upside of being one of the best talents to come out of the draft as a whole is more than fine in my eyes.
I love this pick by the Saints, and Saints fans should to.