With the New Orleans Saints holding the 15th pick in the first round in the 2013 NFL Draft, they are in prime position to grab a premium pass rusher, or a player for their secondary that was burnt more last season than a fair-skinned, red-headed kid at the beach.
But just as the Saints have been known to trade up for players like they did for running back Mark Ingram in 2011, with the club missing a second-round pick this year they could try to swing a deal with another team to get that pick back in the defensive rich draft class.
Of course the big factor will be what the club chooses to do depending on how free agency works out for the team. If the Saints can get some key defensive positions filled through FA, salary cap willing, it would likely change their current draft boards for April.
A majority of mock drafts have the Saints taking outside linebackers Jarvis Jones or Barkevious Mingo with the 15th pick. Prior to the NFL Scouting Combine DE/OLB Dion Jordan was the favorite but draft guru and NFL analyst Mike Mayock compared him to San Francisco 49ers OLB Aldon Smith and immediately Jordan leapt into the Top Ten category.
One thing the Saints aren't going to do this year is reach for a player to force a first round pick. Plenty of players that were unknowns are slowly starting to rise up the draft boards into Day Two such as safety Shamarko Thomas, OLB Cornelius Washington, DE Margus Hunt, and cornerback Robert Alford.
If the Saints see that player they have been wanting is gone or that who they want may take a slide further down the first round, there are two teams that they could try to barter with in order to still stay in the first round while also nabbing that second-round pick to allow another team to move up.
San Francisco 49ers--the 49ers hold the 31st pick in the first round as well as two picks in the second round(2nd and 31st). The Saints could shop their 15th spot to move back considerably but would stand to possibly make two picks almost back to back in the first and second round. Regardless of which one they get it would still be beneficial even having the 31st pick in the second round.
Cincinnati Bengals--the Bengals choose six spots below the Saints at the 21st pick as well as having two second rounders(5th and 23rd). This trade would actually put the Saints in a good position to not only still have a good shot at a prime first round pick but having a nice option in the second round as well. But the Bengals would really have to be wanting a certain player to trade up six picks.
It's understandable that fans will be a little concerned by this scenario. However it's moves such as these that teams like the New England Patriots use to grab more picks during the NFL Draft and keep their franchise competitive as well as helping stock the roster with fresh, young talent.