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Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; The New Orleans Saints made two trades and five selections in the NFL Draft on Friday and Saturday. Here's how I graded each pick, along with an assessment of the overall haul of prospects: Round 2 (No. 48 overall): Center ...

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Old 04-29-2019, 10:50 AM   #1
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The New Orleans Saints made two trades and five selections in the NFL Draft on Friday and Saturday. Here's how I graded each pick, along with an assessment of the overall haul of prospects:



Round 2 (No. 48 overall): Center Erik McCoy
I am already on record about loving this pick. Itís not the sexiest selection, but like the selection of Ryan Ramczyk in 2017, it will look positively beautiful when we review this draft years from now. The move to acquire him was costly. Second-round picks are usually quality selections and the Saints dealt one to Miami to move up and select McCoy. But if things go as planned for the Saints this season, the selection will be a low second-rounder next year and if McCoy develop into a multi-year starter, as most expect, then the price tag will be justified. Most scouts and analysts graded McCoy as a high second-round talent. He has all of the traits the Saints look for in their linemen: versatility, intelligence, toughness and production. He will compete immediately for a starting spot at center but has also played guard in his career and easily slide to the position if needed. He should be an interior anchor for years to come. Grade: A

Round 4 (No. 105): Safety Chauncey Gardner-Johnson
This pick makes a lot of sense. Safety was a sneaky need for the Saints. Marcus Williams struggled through a sophomore slump last season and the Saints lacked quality depth at the position after moving on from Kurt Coleman. Gardner-Johnson was graded as a second-third round talent so to get him high in the fourth round was excellent value. Gardner-Johnsonís athleticism and versatility should allow him to see the field early in sub-packages, where Dennis Allen likes to play multiple safeties for match-up purposes. In Williams, Vonn Bell and Gardner-Johnson, the Saints not have three athletic, almost interchangeable safeties they can employ in passing situations. Grade: B

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Old 04-29-2019, 11:19 AM   #2
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

hes a solid pick i'm not a fan of trading . 85% are reaches in the NFL mccoy is not a reach hes a ramchck type and will kick your ass up the field . i have to give davenport a pass on rookie cam[pain but i will eat my words if he throws a highlite reel in 2019.
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Old 04-29-2019, 12:14 PM   #3
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

If you don't like this draft haul then you don't know the Saints roster and contracts. We had limited picks with no first or third round picks. Jeff Ireland has single handedly turned the Saints draft into a treasure hunt and turned our roster into one of the best, if not the best, in the NFL in just a few years.

And please stop complaining about our late draft picks being redundant because we added valuable depth with potential to be impact players with some seaoning. I realize our members had players and/or positions that they wanted before the draft and that can be disappointing but we are in a good place without a lot of needs to fill going into the season now.

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Old 04-29-2019, 12:16 PM   #4
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

Originally Posted by st thomas View Post
hes a solid pick i'm not a fan of trading . 85% are reaches in the NFL mccoy is not a reach hes a ramchck type and will kick your ass up the field . i have to give davenport a pass on rookie cam[pain but i will eat my words if he throws a highlite reel in 2019.
I have to agree with something Bill Polian said on NFL Radio recently. There is no such thing as a "reach" or as a "value pick" in the draft. If you want a player you do what it takes to get that player and then you move on. He said what it takes to get a player that you want or when you get that player is no longer relevant once the player is selected. You just move on. He says that all of this post draft talk by people that have less than 50% of the information available to those that make the actual picks is meaningless.

I couldn't agree more. Nobody knows how any of these players are going to turn out in three or four years, but those individuals have more information to go on than ANYONE outside their very tiny circle. He said that the scouting department (including head of scouting), have no idea about the details of the medical testing or of any of the conclusions that are based upon the tests. He said outside of the GM and head coach nobody is aware of the personal evaluations of the potential draftees.

Personally, I simply hope each and every player the Saints pick up from wherever turns out to be great.
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Old 04-29-2019, 08:57 PM   #5
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

Seems like we did pretty good with what we had
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Old 04-29-2019, 09:55 PM   #6
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

Pretty fair immediate assessment. Obviously only time will tell but on paper it looks like we got some excellent prospects who were projected to be selected much earlier.

I also am not a fan of the 2nd safety, but late picks are really gambles anyway. Basically just an early UDFA
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Old 04-30-2019, 09:06 AM   #7
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

In the same general theme as Guido's comment. I don't recall exactly who the coach was but when being grilled for not 'waiting on a pick' his comment was "when you want someone, you go get them".... "Did you sit back and wait on your wife'?

Its easy to sit back and would'a should'a could'a after a draft plays out... Three years later.... Easy, but rather disingenuous.
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Old 04-30-2019, 12:31 PM   #8
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

The Oak Posted
Its easy to sit back and would'a should'a could'a after a draft plays out... Three years later.... Easy, but rather disingenuous.

From 2014:

- Undrafted players (14%) were the 3rd most likely group to comprise 2014’s starters…only behind 1st round (30%) and 2nd round (18%) picks.

Tell me again about stock piling Mid Rage draft choices.
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Old 04-30-2019, 12:55 PM   #9
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

From my readings on both of these young kids ...

Excellent team mates, leaders on offense (Erik), leaders on defense (Gardner- Johnson) & have played in a lot of meaningful SEC games.

Gardner - Johnson is a two time (2016, 2018) BOWL GAME MVP so we know the NFL stage won't be too big for him.

I'm just glad we selected him before the Cows did. They were really high on drafting Chauncey. "You snooze, you lose".
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Old 04-30-2019, 07:59 PM   #10
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Re: Jeff Duncan Grades the New Orleans Saints' Draft

Originally Posted by Rugby Saint II View Post
If you don't like this draft haul then you don't know the Saints roster and contracts. We had limited picks with no first or third round picks. Jeff Ireland has single handedly turned the Saints draft into a treasure hunt and turned our roster into one of the best, if not the best, in the NFL in just a few years.

And please stop complaining about our late draft picks being redundant because we added valuable depth with potential to be impact players with some seaoning. I realize our members had players and/or positions that they wanted before the draft and that can be disappointing but we are in a good place without a lot of needs to fill going into the season now.
We threw everything and the kitchen sink to try and make one final run to the Super Bowl with Brees. We were a 13 point blown lead and one bad call away from reaching there. We came close.... We're paying for it now with the limited draft picks, but I don't regret it.
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