The first night of the NFL Draft brought many surprises, as it always does. The Saints were one of those teams who shocked and awed with their selection of Houston's Payton Turner. The verdict is mixed at best on the choice, but it seems like this was one of those 'wait and see' picks. New Orleans still has a lot of areas that need attention, most notably cornerback, linebacker, wide receiver. At some point, it wouldn't be shocking to see them look at both the defensive and offensive line, as well as a tight end.
Day Two Picks: Round Two, 60th Overall; Round Three, 98th Overall; Round Three, 105th Overall
Going into the second night, here's a look at some defensive targets that might be on the team's radar.
- Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Notre Dame - Everyone thought for sure he'd be a top pick, but he fell completely out of Round One. This is one of the top linebacker prospects of the draft, and him not getting selected over guys like Zaven Collins and Jamin Davis leads one to believe that teams are having an issue figuring out where they envision his definitive role on the field.
- Jabril Cox, LSU - He's the LSU player Saints fans have been starving for. He was a popular pick mocked to the team for 60th overall. His coverage skills are strong, and the fact he made the leap from FCS to SEC seem so effortlessly bodes well for success in the NFL.
- Cameron McGrone, Michigan - He's been a stud since High School. He's a top recruit and showed it at Michigan. The best part of his game is that he didn't necessarily get carried like some of the other players. He's underrated, and strong against the run.
- Chazz Surratt, North Carolina - There's a lot of Su'a Cravens elements to his game, but the version of him from USC. Inexperience at linebacker is the biggest question mark regarding Surratt, but his talent is off the charts.
- Asante Samuel Jr., Florida State - Some thought he could sneak into the late part of the first round, but ended up not getting called. Size concerns against larger receivers is what ultimately dings him, but there's no denying that he's an aggressive corner who can make a difference. Expect him to go early in the second round.
- Elijah Molden, Washington - Similar to Samuel Jr., the height is what most are concerned about. That's not to say that Molden can't play with the bigger receivers. He's a strong tackler, very instinctive, and excels in man coverage. He's one of the many players who had a father play in the NFL, and in particular one that was drafted by the Saints in 1996.
- Ifeatu Melifonwu, Syracuse - Melifonwu could have snuck in as a late first rounder, but there are some elements to his game that need some to be cleaned up. His athleticism is what stands out most, and he would be one of those that new secondary coach Kris Richard could take and mold into something special
- Christian Barmore, Alabama - He's clearly the top interior prospect of the draft, and someone that could have been selected in Round One. He shouldn't last that long on Friday night. He can be dominant, but something seems like it's holding him back at times. He'll need a strong coach to help develop him into something great and unlock his true potential.
- Osa Odighizuwa, UCLA - Has potential to be a steal. He's extremely versatile and explosive. He might only need a few extra pounds on him, but he could plug in nicely as a run-stuffer who can eat some blocks and make some plays.