For the first time in team history, New Orleans Saints’ fans were not looking to the 2010 NFL Draft in hopes that their team would finally find the missing pieces to lead the franchise to the promised land of a world championship. Coming off their stunning victory in Super Bowl XIV over the favored Indianapolis Colts, the New Orleans Saints found themselves in the enviable position of trying to fine tune their roster in hopes of repeating as back-to-back Super Bowl champions.
The conventional wisdom heading into the draft was that New Orleans needed help on defense. Despite ranking 2nd in the league in forcing turnovers, the Saints’ defense ranked in the lower half of the league in most statistical categories, such as yards allowed and points allowed.
When the time finally arrived for New Orleans to make their selection, Saints’ fans were given the treat of having Drew Brees, the MVP quarterback of Super Bowl XIV, announce the pick. Before that, he first thanked the fans for voting him as one of the 75 best draft picks of all time. And he also thanked the fans for voting him onto the cover of the Madden NFL 11 video game. Finally, at 10:03 p.m. New Orleans time, Drew Brees announced that the New Orleans Saints selected Patrick Robinson, CB out of Florida State, with the 32nd pick of the 2010 NFL Draft.
The pick was somewhat of a surprise in the sense that New Orleans seemed to need more help at DE rather that CB. Will Smith had an outstanding season rushing the quarterback, but Charles Grant had been cut at the end of the season. However, New Orleans got tremendous play from starting CB’s Jabari Greer and postseason hero Tracy Porter. And the Saints drafted CB Malcolm Jenkins with its 1st Round selection in 2009. But clearly, New Orleans had confidence in the ability of free agent DE Alex Brown to apply pressure from the other side of Will Smith. According to ESPN’s coverage of the 2010 NFL Draft, Patrick Robinson intercepted seven passes in his career at Florida State and was voted 2nd Team All-ACC at the conclusion of his senior season. Given the Saints’ depth in the secondary, Robinson figures to get playing time primarily on special teams in 2011, as well as limited play on defense in nickel and dime schemes. Having drafted a defensive player for the third consecutive year, the New Orleans Saints hope their defense can finally come close to matching the success of their offense.
“ESPN NFL Draft”, aired on ESPN, April 22, 2010.
Check out this other great article about the New Orleans Saints.
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