As you might have heard by now, the New Orleans Saints don't have a first-round pick and that's going to make it hard for them to find a quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft. They currently hold the No. 43 overall pick as their first selection in April's draft. Could they find a quarterback with that selection?
In my mock draft done on NFL Mock Draft Database, the Saints do indeed find a signal-caller with the 43rd overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Not only that, but NFL Mock Draft Database grades each pick and gave the Saints an A+ for this selection.
Let's check out the two selections NOLA made in this three-round mock.
Round 2: Pick 43 - Tanner McKee, QB (Stanford)
" McKee’s arm talent is among the best in college football. He has the arm strength to drive throws into tight windows—he has easy velocity and zip. He comfortably makes far-hash throws without concerns. He snaps his hips and feet on RPO action. He throws with good touch and timing when it’s required."- Damian Parsons, The Draft Network
It's hard to find a franchise quarterback after first 10 picks or so in the first round but the Saints hope to buck that trend here with the selection of McKee. While the numbers aren't super flashy, McKee is very much a Drew Brees-type of quarterback. He stands in the pocket and makes his throws and avoids running around like a madman.
The NFL is seemingly going away from these kind of quarterbacks but it feels more like quarterbacks have to scramble more because offensive linemen aren't as talented these days. McKee has thrown for 2,634 yards, 12 touchdowns, and eight interceptions through 11 games this year, which, as I mentioned above, isn't dazzling by any means.
McKee would be a project quarterback but with Jameis Winston under contract again next season and Taysom Hill still on the roster, he'd have guys around him who could mentor him.
Round 3: Pick 74 - Jordan Battle, S (Alabama)
"In the run game, Battle is quick to read, run, and trigger downhill to run the alley and make the tackle. In the pass game, he shows his range by closing downhill and jumping in front of receivers to break up the pass or intercept the ball. Battle shows to be a very smart football player that is always in the right place. "- Keith Sanchez, The Draft Network
It's become clear this year that the Saints need help at safety. Tyrann Mathieu is a bad tackler and Marcus Maye isn't reliable enough from a health standpoint. Battle could be a nice addition for New Orleans in the third round and he feels very much like a player that would have fit in perfectly with the Saints defenses we had grown accustomed to before this year.
What stands out about Battle is that he's effective in both the run and the pass game, which is something the Saints need to add to their defense. Both Mathieu and Maye are under contract next year, but as we've seen this season, they can't be trusted on their own. New Orleans needs help at the position and Battle could provide that much-needed help.
How would you feel about the New Orleans Saints adding these two players with their first two picks in the draft?