The New Orleans Saints lost out on signing veteran wide receiver Greg Jennings yesterday when it was announced that he had signed with the Miami Dolphins.
It was a move that would have been a great addition to the receiving corps since Jennings would have brought leadership as well as playmaking ability for the offense.
With the 2015 NFL Draft only one week away there won’t be any other free agents the Saints could bring in that would have the impact Jennings would have.
More from Big Easy Believer
- New Orleans Saints: Three biggest questions heading into the offseason
- New Orleans Saints: Three positives to take from playoff loss
- New Orleans Pelicans: Betting guide vs. Sacramento Kings
- New Orleans Saints: Bold predictions for Wild Card Round vs. Vikings
- New Orleans Pelicans: Betting guide in Los Angeles Lakers rematch
This could mean that the draft focus for the Saints may shift slightly in regards to choosing a wide receiver in the early rounds.
The popular opinion has been that the two first round picks and one second round pick the Saints currently hold need to be used on defensive players.
Head coach Sean Payton himself even said that they need players that can come in and contribute immediately and draft picks in the first two rounds are usually found in that area.
Recent mock drafts have had the Saints taking a wide receiver like Louisville’s DeVante Parker in the first round or Miami’s Phillip Dorsett in the first or second round.
Nov 29, 2014; Louisville, KY, USA; Louisville Cardinals wide receiver DeVante Parker (9) runs the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats during the second half at Papa John
I actually gave the squinted eye to these simply due to the need on defense and there being options later in the third or even the fifth rounds.
To be honest I was actually banking on Jennings signing with the Saints and then that scenario could actually be a reality.
But with that off the table now I went back and looked at what the Saints had on their roster for wide receiver and I wasn’t squinting anymore…actually my eye were wide open.
More from Editorials
- Pelicans PG Jrue Holiday Poised For Career-Defining Season
- GRADES: Pelicans Make their Mark on 2016 Draft
- Different Year, Same Questions for QB Harris and LSU
- How Danny Ferry Can Reverse Course on the Pelicans’ Future
- Saints Need to Avoid Being “Sucker Punched” in 2016
The team currently has nine receivers listed with Marques Colston and Brandin Cooks being the two headliners and likely #1 and # 2 at that position respectively.
After that there is a lot of question marks and uncertainty with Joseph Morgan and Nick Toon being a possible #3.
Morgan has it by a hair since we know he can make plays but there was the “hush hush” off the field issues that occurred that came to a head last season leading to his release before being re-signed.
Toon reminds me of former Saints receiver Adrian Arrington who was terrific in training camp but never could put it together when the season started.
Following close behind Toon are fellow receivers Brandon Coleman, Seantavius Jones, Jalen Saunders, Willie Snead, and fan favorite Andy Tanner.
Another option remains for the Saints to add a veteran wide receiver in free agency and that is Robert Meachem.
It wouldn’t be a huge surprise in the least if Meachem is getting a call from Payton right now or if they bring him back following the draft to add more depth.
Nov 10, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints wide receiver Robert Meachem (17) carries up the field against Dallas Cowboys inside linebacker Ernie Sims (59) during the third quarter at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
Those mock drafts that have the Saints taking a wide receiver with in the early rounds may not be far off the mark and NOLA.com’s Larry Holder thinks they grab one with the 31st pick or in the second round.
So is a pick at the wide receiver position becoming more of a priority for the Saints after losing out on a veteran like Jennings and quality depth being an issue?
I still believe that the Saints go all in on defense for the first round if they keep their two picks and think they go with an edge rusher at outside linebacker and then inside linebacker.
The second round is becoming more and more of a possibility especially if Dorsett is still available since both Payton and Asst. GM Jeff Ireland were widely reported as having a huge man-crush on him at Miami’s Pro Day.
But reaching for a receiver in the first or second round would be a huge mistake since others like Tre McBride, Tyler Lockett, and possibly even Devin Smith being around for the third round.
You can agree that with only two strong starters on the roster, receiver is becoming more of a priority in regards to making sure they address it correctly.
If the Saints choose a receiver in the first or second round fans shouldn’t throw their remotes at the T.V., but instead throw all their faith into hoping he can contribute immediately…..