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Saints Post-Draft Free Agent Options at Running Back

The New Orleans Saints still have viable running back options in free-agency post NFL Draft.

The New Orleans Saints are still gauging their options at running back, and for a good reason. With a potential suspension handed to superstar RB Alvin Kamara looming, the Black and Gold will have a major hole to fill offensively. Though Kamara hasn't received a suspension, Mickey Loomis and Dennis Allen have continued to do their homework on potential additions to the Saints running back room. 

Just days after the 2022 NFL Draft, the Saints hosted former first-round selection Sony Michel, for a visit. Michel, a player familiar with shared backfield duties in his NFL and collegiate career, could have been a great fit in New Orleans. However, he inked a one-year deal to join the Miami Dolphins.

Nonetheless, there are still many viable options in free agency if the New Orleans Saints elect to go that route. Some are grizzled NFL veterans, others are familiar faces, and a few are looking for their second wind in the NFL.

Wayne Gallman, 27 

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Wayne Gallman was drafted in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the New York Giants following a National Championship winning season at Clemson. His best season came in 2020 while filling in for the injured Saquon Barkley. The versatile half-back totaled 796 scrimmage yards and seven touchdowns as the Giants' starter. 

Unfortunately for Gallman, he has been unable to stick with a franchise since 2020, playing for the 49ers, Falcons, and Vikings. The former All-ACC running back does appear to have some gas left in his tank and is searching for his second chance in the NFL. With the ability to play a pivotal role in zone rushing schemes and strong hands out of the backfield, New Orleans could be a golden ticket back into the league for Gallman..

Darrel Williams, 27

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New Orleans could bring in yet another former LSU Tiger and Louisiana native with Darrel Williams. The 27-year-old was in New Orleans this week, posting a photo to his Instagram story of the Superdome. Williams has been a large part of the Kansas City Chiefs' recent success in his NFL career, including his best season to date in 2021.

With injuries to Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Williams was the Chiefs' number one running back, totaling 1,010 yards with eight touchdowns in 2021. The 2018 UDFA has found a role in the NFL sharing the backfield and would be an immediate plug-and-play addition to the Saints running back room. 

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Williams could be more than a one-year rental in New Orleans with reliable hands and deceptive speed. Perhaps even Alvin Kamara's running mate for years to come.

David Johnson, 30

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It is hard to forget David Johnson's 2,000 scrimmage yard season in 2016. Many thought it was a campaign berthed the next star running back in the league. However, Johnson never lived up to the hype, and the "one-year wonder" is still looking to show he has a little magic left.

Over the last two seasons, Johnson has served in Houston's split-backfield while totaling 1,458 scrimmage yards during his time as a Texan. The Northern Iowa product is likely looking at his final NFL contract or two but can provide leadership, experience, and an explosive play here and there for an NFL franchise. For New Orleans, a deal with Johnson would most likely not eclipse one season but could serve as a solid placeholder if Kamara is to miss time.


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