3 New Orleans Saints who might get demoted after 2022 NFL Draft

Leigh Oleszczak
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Marquez Callaway (1) - Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Marquez Callaway (1) - Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports /
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New Orleans Saints
James Hurst, New Orleans Saints (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

2. James Hurst

Had the Saints not taken an offensive tackle in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft, their likely plan going into the season would have been to slot James Hurst in as the starting left tackle. Hurst was signed two years ago as a swing option on the o-line and he’s seen a fair amount of playing time since joining the black and gold.

The Saints, as we all know, lost Terron Armstead to the Dolphins this offseason, leaving a huge gaping hole at left tackle. Hurst would have gotten the call to start there assuming NOLA didn’t bring in someone like Eric Fisher or Nate Solder but a name was called on Thursday night that now puts Hurst’s starting job in jeopardy.

That name was Trevor Penning.

Penning, who went 19th overall, played his college ball at Northern Iowa. While some felt he was better suited on the right side of the line, Dennis Allen said that Ryan Ramczyk will be staying at right tackle. This means that Penning is fighting with Hurst to start at left tackle.

While it’s not a lock that Penning wins the job over Hurst, the Saints didn’t add an additional first-round draft pick to take a guy who won’t be contributing in 2022.

Who Dat Nation might have been excited about this pick but James Hurst probably wasn’t celebrating.

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