Grading the jersey numbers of the Saints 2023 draft picks
The New Orleans Saints recently announced the jersey numbers for their 2023 draft picks. We're here to grade each number for the newest Saints rookies.
Earlier this week, the New Orleans Saints publicly announced what numbers their rookies will be wearing for the start of their careers in the Big Easy. It's an exciting time for Saints fans, so they can get a better mental snapshot of what their newest players will look like in their colors. Of course, these such announcements also kick #PhotoShopSzn into full gear, so they can always get an actual hypothetical snapshot as well.
We aren't in the photoshop business, but we are in business of voicing opinions. With that being the case, it is time to unveil our letter grades for the jersey numbers for each of the Saints' seven 2023 Draft picks.
Saints first-round draft pick: DT Bryan Bresee - number 90
The Saints first-round selection Bryan Bresee wore a bit of an untraditional number of 11 while manning the middle of the defensive line for the Clemson Tigers. So having said that, it's a little suprising that he'd wear a number that some would call basic for a defensive lineman in 90. The number became available with Tanoh Kpassgnon switching to 92 for the 2023 season (and beyond). Still, it is a pretty cool looking number, with a lot of room to help the legacy.
GRADE: Gentleman's A-
Saints second-round draft pick: DE Isaiah Foskey - number 55
From a number that doesn't have much of a historical legacy with the Saints to one that has more significance. We recently talked about how Isaiah Foskey is the most intruiging prpsect to come out of this draft for the Saints. He also picked an intriguing number for the Saints, most notably wore by past linebackers Scott Fujita and Mark Fields. When you add all that up, it's a recipe for success, mostly aesthetically of course.
Saints third-round draft pick: RB Kendre Miller - number 25
When you think of the Saints and the number 25, Reggie Bush is who comes to mind. Kendre Miller also happens to play the same position, so from that perspective he has a bit of an uphill climb. Fortunately, Miller is a strong runner with a bruising style that should endear himself to Saints fans. Still, we have to knock him down a peg or two for the inevitable Bush comparisons.
Saints fourth-round draft pick: OL Nick Saldiveri - number 64
Nick Saldiveri is a versatile offensive lineman that can play outside and inside. He comes from a bit of a smaller program in Old Dominion, so the lack of national respect should cause him to have a chip on his shouler. The number is a good choice, that has been warned by several offensive linemen in NFL history that have become criminally under-appreciated despite their greatness, just not former Saints.
Saints fourth-round draft pick: QB Jake Haener - number 14
This is an interesting one. The Saints may have signed their quarterback, but there's always room for someone to bring in and try to develop in-house. Still, the number 14 has something of a checkered history of quarterbacks, such as Andy Dalton, who Saints fans know well. It was also somewhat bizarrely worn by Mark Ingram in his second stint in the Bayou, which adds to this peculiar situation.
Saints fifth-round draft pick: S Jordan Howden - number 31
One of the past free agency signings that will cause the blood of Saints fans to boil was safety Jarius Byrd. Howden is a high-motor player that flies around the ball that, if his potential is reached, could help Saints fans forget Byrd. It's no guarantee though.
Saints sixth-round draft pick: WR A.T. Perry - number 17
Similar to our spiel with the number 25, the number 17 has become pretty synonymous with wide receiver Robert Meachem to Saints fans. Then again, fans of past generations will harken back to the days of former quarterbacks Jim Everett and Billy Kilmer, who had success certain teams, and the Saints certainly were not one of them. As a sixth-round pick, and the final one the Saints made, Perry has a long way to go.
So there you have it. We'd be remiss if we didn't mention that even with the recent rule change that allows NFL players to have more freedom with jersey numbers that resemble that of what they where in college, it's somewhat of a letdown that every Saints rookie will be wearing more... traditional numbers. Still, we're excited to see just what the players sporting these numbers are able to do on the field for the New Orleans Saints.