Over the course of May, both Joe Marino and I will be assessing each team’s specific Draft class. The objective here is to identify value: where it was best and where it was worst. NDT Premium members will soon be able to access the comprehensive breakdowns of draft classes as well, which looks at the pick by pick breakdown of value across our respective 2017 NFL Draft boards. Today I look at the New Orleans Saints.
The full list of their 2017 NFL Draft class is below:
|11||CB||Marshon Lattimore||Ohio State|
|103||EDGE||Trey Hendrickson||Florida Atlantic|
|196||EDGE||Al-Quadin Muhammad||Miami FL|
Best Value: OT Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin
What a steal of a pick this was! Ramczyk did not test throughout the off-season circuit and, like many others with the same situation, experienced something of a slide. The Saints were in position to snag Ramczyk with the last pick in the first round courtesy of the Brandin Cooks trade and the selection was the second best value measured against my draft board in the 1st round.
Ramczyk’s immediate future? He’s likely going to be the swing tackle and get limited looks unless he comes in and blows the doors off of training camp (possible, considering he was one of my 10 best players in the class).
But more likely than not this is a long term selection for the Saints, and it should be a great one.
Worst Value: SAF Marcus Williams, Utah
I liked a lot about what the Saints were able to add. Ramczyk, Lattimore, Anzalone, Kamara and Hendrickson were all players that I liked within context and thought the Saints did well to optimize value with. That leaves Williams as the standalone selection that missed the mark versus my personal evaluation.
Williams is an interesting selection because he comes in as the third safety in a Safety groud that doesn’t have a lot of range. Williams can do well patrolling the middle as a deep third player but I didn’t see a lot of high end traits.
Could Surprise: DE Al-Quadin Muhammad, Miami FL
Muhammad was a player who caught my eye as a sophomore in 2015. His performance against the Florida State Seminoles that year was super impressive.
When Muhammad is on and the motor is running hot, he’s a twitch player with violence and some impressive flashes playing off of blocks. The issue here is two fold: the motor doesn’t run hot with consistency and after potential NCAA violations, Muhammad hasn’t played football since that 2015 season.
The physical ability is present for Muhammad to become a good football player at the NFL level. The question is whether or not he keeps his head on straight and where he is with his football maturity and mental processing. The pick was a risk, but an appropriate risk at this stage of the draft.