This article will be unpopular, but I'm willing to take the heat. As much as it's been a pleasure to watch Alvin Kamara ball out for the New Orleans Saints over the past six seasons, it's time to move on from him.
Kamara will be 28 years old by the start of next season and has already shown significant signs of regression. The sad reality is that when halfbacks reach the age range of 27-30, they tend not to be the players they used to be. Fans may not want to hear it, but that's how the modern NFL works.
To be quite frank this team is very mediocre and isn't a Superbowl-caliber team. There is absolutely no point in keeping a 28-year-old halfback who has regressed on this roster. In his first two seasons, Kamara played 31 games, amassing 1,614 rushing yards, 5.1 Y/A, 7.7 yards per touch, and 31 total touchdowns.
In the past two years, Kamara has been less efficient, averaging 3.8 Y/A, 4.9 yards per touch, and only has 13 total touchdowns. While some fans will blame his inefficiencies on the offensive line, and this is a valid point, it has been an overblown narrative.
It's time for the New Orleans Saints to trade Alvin Kamara.
The offensive line has been relatively average in the run game. They rank 15th in adjusted line yards per Football Outsiders. Adjusted line yards is a formula that takes all HB carries and assigns responsibility per the offensive line. Per ESPN, the team ranks 14th in run block win rate and has two players in the top ten for their respective positions. So, while the offensive line hasn't been great, it has been better than some fans make it out to be.
To the Kamara supporters that say, "We use him too much on inside runs and not enough on outside runs," I will agree with you. The coaching staff has not utilized him in space enough, one of his special talents. We all agree that Dennis Allen and Pete Carmichael have been bad this season.
However, it's not like a new head coach and offensive coordinator will instantly change Kamara back to elite status. It would take a lot of time for the new staff and Kamara to really gel. So yes, while the staff hasn't made his life easier, he was already showing signs of regressions.
Alvin Kamara is still a special player, but it's just not the way modern football works for halfbacks to be paid and play at an elite level for a long period of time. This is why the Saints should look to recoup a draft haul for Kamara and draft a running back on Day 2 or 3 of the 2023 NFL Draft.
We've seen some of the better halfbacks in the league go on Day 2 in Dalvin Cook and Nick Chubb, and Kamara himself was a third-rounder. We've also seen some up-and-coming stars drafted in rounds two or three, such as Breece Hall, Javontae Williams, and Kenneth Walker. We've even seen great halfbacks go on Day 3, like Aaron Jones, Rhamondre Stevenson, Tony Pollard, Elijah Mitchell, and Dameon Pierce.
On top of the ability for teams to find studs in later rounds, winning teams in this league don't pay halfbacks. Teams that have won the Super Bowl aren't breaking the bank for their halfback.
The Saints should either trade Kamara this offseason for draft picks this year or wait until after the June 1st deadline to save about 11 million and could get picks for the upcoming draft. These options are much more optimal for team success.