The blockbuster New Orleans Saints trade with the Philadelphia Eagles earlier this offseason gives the NFC South team an additional first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
With general manager Mickey Loomis looking to succeed in the post-Sean Payton era, the focus turns to the all-important quarterback position. Right now, veterans Jameis Winston and Andy Dalton lead the quarterback room.
However, there’s other needs for New Orleans after the team missed out on the playoffs last season. Will this lead to Loomis and Co. pulling off a blockbuster deal? Below, we look at three ideal New Orleans Sains trade scenarios for the 2022 NFL Draft next week in Vegas.
New Orleans Saints trade up for Malik Willis
It’s become pretty clear that New Orleans is eyeing one or two quarterbacks in a relatively weak draft class at that position. The team was also in on Deshaun Watson before he was dealt from the Houston Texans to the Cleveland Browns. After trying to acquire Mac Jones during the 2021 NFL Draft, we fully expect New Orleans to be proactive at this position next week.
Enter into the equation the consensus No. 1 quarterback in the draft class. Malik Willis has all of the tools to be a franchise signal caller moving forward. He’s a dual-threat quarterback with a cannon for an arm and an ability to show consistent accuracy.
Perhaps, moving off both first-round picks in a trade for Willis could get something done here. Per various trade value charts, sending the 16th and 19th picks could get New Orleans to as high as No. 4 overall in a deal with the New York Jets. That would be enough to land Mr. Willis.
Related: Top 2022 NFL Draft prospects
New Orleans Saints trade for third first-round pick
The aforementioned trade with the Philadelphia Eagles made one thing clear. New Orleans is going all in on the 2022 NFL Draft. Why not add to that by picking up yet another Day 1 selection?
The idea here would be for the Saints to get back into the late first round, enabling them to draft a player with a fifth-year team option. Obviously, the focal point would be the quarterback position. Sam Howell (North Carolina), Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati) and Matt Corral (Mississippi) could all be options. Moving up from the 49th pick would likely require the Saints’ third-round selection (98th overall) and a future mid-round pick. That could be worth it.
Related: 2022 NFL Draft rumors
New Orleans Saints trade for A.J. Brown
Brown joins fellow young wide receivers in Deebo Samuel, DK Metcalf and Terry McLaurin in holding out of voluntary team activities. There’s also rumors that the former Mississippi standout could be dealt. His recent social media activity adds another layer to this.
By acquiring an additional first-round pick, Loomis and Co. have a ton of flexibility here. Whether it’s trading for Brown or someone like Samuel, adding another receiver to team up with Michael Thomas would be seen as a coup.
- A.J. Brown stats (2019-21): 185 receptions, 2,995 yards, 24 TD, 63% catch rate
Still only 24 years old, Brown could be a long-term fixture in the Bayou. He has All-Pro potential and hasn’t even hit his ceiling yet. Getting the proven wide receiver for one of their two first-round picks rather than selecting a rookie would make all of the sense in the world. Expect these rumors to heat up as the NFL Draft gets going in Las Vegas here soon.