On Tuesday, Mickey Loomis had his pre-NFL Draft press conference to discuss and deny any future plans for the New Orleans Saints in this weekend's selection process. During that exchange with the media, Loomis said two things that really stuck out to me.
He said, "...there are a lot of good pass rushers in this draft." He also said, "We [Saints] have taken some players off our board due to health concerns."
Those two statements told me that Jarvis Jones wasn't going to be the pick in the first round. That wasn't inside information or anything, but just a gut feeling. The only other players that I saw as alternatives to Jones were Kenny Vaccaro and Ezekiel Ansah, As soon as "Ziggy" came off the board, it was a no-brainer.
Vaccaro was going to be their man, as long as he lasted to No.15 without a team like San Francisco or Dallas trying to jump them for the Longhorn (I know 40 times really don't mean much, but his mediocre runs might have caused a top ten talent like himself to drop to the Saints).
This was a really good pick for a guy who can do it all, but also someone who will give New Orleans options in their secondary.
Sean Payton referenced the West Virginia game when talking about Vaccaro, because 95% of the time in that game Vaccaro was blanketed on Tavon Austin and covered him well. I know these are just his highlights, but watch midway through this video and look at his open field tackle against Austin and then tell me how slow this guy is.
Vaccaro is so versatile that one of the multiple positions Texas used him at last year was MLB in sub-packages.
As I was saying before, he gives you multiple options when it comes to the Saints secondary. This could mean the end for Roman Harper in order to make room for the Longhorn. That would put Vaccaro and Malcolm Jenkins at both safety positions (the distinction between FS/SS isn't needed with those guys in this scenario).
Another option, if New Orleans keeps Harper, is to move Jenkins back to cornerback and play Vaccaro at free safety.
If the Saints really wanted to shake up their secondary, they could trade Harper, move Jenkins to CB and start Vaccaro and Isa Abdul-Quddus, who deserves to be on the field more this year after outplaying both starters. That would give New Orleans some big starting corners in Jenkins and Kennan Lewis and behind them would be two young safeties that could grow together. (Anyone still question Jenkins speed after catching Vincent Jackson last season?)
Don't give me the "but Sharrif Floyd was there" argument either. Okay? Just because you are a pass-rushing DT doesn't mean you can play DE in a 3-4. He might be good in that system...maybe.
Jarvis Jones' head probably won't fall off after 3 years...maybe.
What real question marks do you have with Kenny Vaccaro? He was the best option of the bunch and will be a future All-Pro safety in New Orleans for the Black & Gold.