The New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl last year but there are holes that need to be filled. The Saints drafted for needs down the line and not many immediate needs. New Orleans added depth in the secondary, offensive line and a workable number three quarterback in the last round of the NFL Draft.
Judging by New Orleans draft, they obviously did not think their defense was in need a youth movement. By not picking up a linebacker in the NFL Draft, Sean Peyton sent a clear signal to his defense that he believes in them, even though they gave up a lot of big plays in the 2009 NFL season. The answer will be clear by the sixth game of the NFL season if New Orleans has given up a ton of points.
New Orleans Saints first pick of the NFL Draft 32nd overall Patrick Robinson.
Patrick Robinson a possible shut down, cover cornerback out of Florida State will most likely be backing up the Saints number one pick from last year, corner Malcolm Jenkins. If anything, Robinson will be a catalyst to keep Jenkins playing aggressively on the corner. The Robinson pick may have been a message to Jenkins or just a pick for added depth.
Look for Robinson to gain extra playing time on the special teams and he will make an immediate impact. It never hurts to throw some speed on the special teams. Another possibility to get Robinson in the line up, will be to either move Robinson or Jenkins to safety. Robinson will probably play in all 16 New Orleans games.
New Orleans Saints second pick of the NFL Draft and 64th overall Charles Brown.
Charles Brown the large offensive tackle from USC, may have heard Charlie Brown football jokes growing up if wasn’t so large. New Orleans needed some added depth just in case, for the offensive line. Charles Brown is a big man with some athleticism and may break into the New Orleans starting roster by mid way through the 2010 NFL season.
New Orleans Saints third NFL Draft pick and 95th overall Jimmy Graham.
Jimmy Graham a tight end out of Miami may have landed in the perfect spot to learn the position. His mentor will be fellow Miami alumni, Jeremy Shockey. Makes you wonder if Shockey may have been involved with a suggestion.
Possibly because of his basketball background, Jimmy Graham has been compared to Tony Gonzalez. Graham will be on the special teams from day one for New Orleans and could possibly see duty in the rotation. Shockey has a history of getting injured so don’t be surprised if Graham is starting by mid season.
New Orleans Saints fourth NFL Draft pick and 125th overall Al Woods.
Al Woods a defensive tackle out of LSU doesn’t have to travel far to start his NFL career. Al Woods only started one year at LSU but he fits New Orleans needs for a defensive tackle and has time to work himself into the the starting line up. There won’t be a need to rush Woods into the line up right away.
New Orleans Saints fifth NFL Draft pick and 158th overall Matt Tenant.
Matt Tenant a center from Boston College is under sized for a center and New Orleans will spending some quality time bulking him up. The position of center is just as important as the quarterback position. Developing a center is a process and Tenant will be eased into the center position slowly.
New Orleans Saints sixth NFL Draft pick and 239th overall Sean Canfield.
Sean Canfield, out of Oregon State is a serviceable back up quarterback, that can develop into a number one QB under the tutelage of Drew Brees. The great opportunity for Canfield is that Brees is aware that someday he will be replaced and he can take his time grooming Canfield.
Canfield will get plenty of reps early in the pre season and the last game of the pre season. New Orleans will be looking for Canfield to force his way into the number two quarterback spot. The number two quarterback is the most important position on any football team and if Canfield can rise to that position, this will be a successful pick for New Orleans.
NFL Network NFL Draft live coverage April 22-24.
ESPN TV NFL Draft live coverage April 22-24.