It's the day of the 2013 NFL Draft, basically Christmas morning for NFL fans as their teams are picking out a new set of toys. The Saints are picking basically in the middle of the 1st round at 15, and it's still anyone's guess where they'll go with the pick. Heck, it still anyone's guess who the top pick is going to be, let alone who will be available at #15.
I can't recall a draft with this much uncertainty before. Its the day of the draft, and there's still talk of guys leaping up into the top 10 (Tavon Austin, D.J. Hayden, Ryan Nassib) or players slipping out of the first round (Geno Smith, Corderelle Patterson, Bjoern Werner). They always say the draft is a crapshoot and that's never been more true than this year.
The Times-Picayune took a sample of 50 mock drafts to see what the Saints were projected to do, and the majority show that LB Jarvis Jones would be the selection. The next highest player was Barkevious Mingo, who is getting a lot of buzz as a top 10 pick. If he slides, I'm sure the Saints would be happy to turn in their card with his name on it.
In the same vein as the Times-Picayune, here's a look at a few mocks and who they have the Saints selecting:
- Mike Mayock: Barkevious Mingo, OLB/DE, LSU
- Sports Illustrated's Don Banks: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
- Sports Illustrated's Peter King: Sylvester Williams, DT, UNC
- SI.com's Twitter Fan Vote: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Goergia
- NFL Draft Countdown: Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
- Walter Football: Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
- NFL.com Gil Brandt: Sylvester Williams, DT, UNC
- NFL.com Daniel Jeremiah: D.J. Flucker, OT, Alabama
- Mike Detillier: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
- Larry Holder, Times-Picayune: Barkevious Mingo, OLB/DE, LSU
- Nakia Hogan, Times-Picayune: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
With all that uncertainty, this much is clear, most "experts" have the Saints taking defense in Round 1. BUT ... the Saints have been known to throw out some curveballs in the draft, so I wouldn't be surprised if they went with someone that was unexpected, and that's what makes the draft so much fun.
If I had to narrow down the pick based on who will likely be available, I think the choice will come down to Jarvis Jones or Kenny Vaccaro, with the team choosing Jones since pass rushers are a more sought after position and safeties can be found later in the draft. If one of the top defensive linemen like Sheldon Richardson or Star Lotulelei is there, they may have to pull the trigger and take them.