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5 New Orleans Saints quarterback options in 2021 NFL Draft

It’s not a secret that the New Orleans Saints are quietly looking to add a quarterback of the future in the coming 2021 NFL Draft following the retirement of Drew Brees.

Sure the Saints have two veterans in Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston slated to compete for the starting job this summer. However, both are likely going to be free agents next March and might not fit into head coach Sean Payton’s long-term plans.

Selecting 28th overall, the Saints are not in a position to land one of the top-five quarterbacks in the NFL Draft short of pulling off a blockbuster trade up the board.

They could also potentially trade down to land a second-tier quarterback in Round 2 or simply nab one with their 28th pick. Below, we look at five quarterback options for the New Orleans Saints in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Who will be the best QB from the 2021 NFL Draft?

Read More: New Orleans Saints mock draft: Full 7-round 2021 NFL Draft projections

New Orleans Saints stand pat, add sixth first-round quarterback

New Orleans Saints draft Kyle Trask
Dec 30, 2020; Arlington, TX, USA; Florida Gators quarterback Kyle Trask (11) throws a pass against the Oklahoma Sooners in the second quarter at ATT Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

We’re hearing rumors that both Kellen Mond from Texas A&M and former Florida star quarterback Kyle Trask could go within the top-32 picks next week. It makes sense for teams to select a quarterback at the end of Round 1 given that said organization would the have a fifth-year option on the quarterback’s rookie deal. Given the NFL salary cap dynamics, this is no small thing.

As for a fit in Payton’s offense with the Saints, the 6-foot-5 Trask might actually make the most sense here. He’s your prototypical drop-back passer in the mold of the aforementioned Brees. He’s also among the most-accurate passers in the entire class and distributes the ball to a variety of different pass-catchers, two staples of Payton’s system.

Read More: 2021 NFL Mock Draft: Expert Picks & Opinions on Round 1 Prospects

New Orleans Saints trade up for Mac Jones

New Orleans Saints trade up for Mac Jones
Jan 11, 2021; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Mac Jones (10) against the Ohio State Buckeyes in the 2021 College Football Playoff National Championship Game. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Speaking of natural fits in Payton’s offense, Mac Jones’ football IQ and accuracy makes him an ideal target for New Orleans. Sure some will question the ceiling this reigning Heisman finalist boasts. But he has one of the highest floors we’ve seen from a first-round quarterback prospect in some time.

Jones also played in a pro-friendly offense under coordinator Steve Sarkisian with the Crimson Tide. Of all the quarterbacks not named Zach Wilson or Trevor Lawrence, he boasts the most ability to start Week 1. Should Jones fall outside of the top-10, a massive trade up could be in the cards. It would be similar to when the Kansas City Chiefs moved up from the 27th pick to 10th overall for Patrick Mahomes back in 2017.

New Orleans Saints look to add mid-round gem

New Orleans Saints draft Sam Ehlinger
Aug 31, 2019; Austin, TX, USA; Texas Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger (11) keeps the ball for a run in the first half against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

The target player here would likely be former Wake Forest starter Jamie Newman after the second round. The 6-foot-3 signal caller dominated with the Demon Deacons before transferring to Georgia a season ago and opting out of the campaign. He boasts an extremely strong arm and the prototypical frame Payton likes under center. Newman would also likely be available with the Saints’ third-round pick (98th overall).

Former Texas standout Sam Ehlinger could be an option even later in the draft. Prior to last season, he was seen as a potential Day 2 pick. It’s all about accuracy and timing for the 6-foot-1 signal caller, something that we saw from Brees throughout his Hall of Fame-worthy career for the Saints. While a developmental quarterback prospect, adding Ehlinger in the later rounds could make sense for the New Orleans Saints.