REASON #1: THE HISTORY OF THE 1ST SAFETY DRAFTED THE PAST 10 YEARS:
2012: Mark Barron, 7th pick, Bucs
2007: Laron Landry, 6th pick, Redskins
2005: Antrel Rolle was the 8th pick by the Cards as a CB, but has played safety most of his career.
2004: Sean Taylor, 5th pick, Redskins
That's a pretty fine list of safeties right there. For what it's worth, Brodney Pool was the actual first true safety drafted in 2005. He isn't terrible, but my point is....
Of the 9 guys listed above (in respect to Sean Taylor, heck of a player whose time was unfortunately cut short), how many of them would you pick to start over either of our safeties? Throw in Brodney Pool and we got 10 guys who were drafted high that could realistically give one or both of our safeties a run for that starter spot.
Kenny Vaccaro is expected to be the 1st safety drafted this year, and he deserves that title. Looking at the past 10 seasons, it's pretty safe to assume that Vaccaro will contribute immediately to the defense. Even if its a part time role during his rookie season, it will only delay the inevitable that Vaccaro will be a starting Saints safety for the next 4-10 years, depending upon his production and our cap room at the time. THAT is worth a 15th overall pick.
Many Saints fans want a LB or NT drafted in round 1. I thought this was a very deep LB and DT/NT draft? At least, that's what I've been hearing. After the signing of Victor Butler and all of the money invested in our current LB group, is it best to think LB high in the draft? Is it possible that a lower round NT could be exactly what we need to rotate with Bunkley/Hicks?
I like my chances with Vaccaro. I think he has the least bust potential out of the guys available to us.
REASON #2: OUR SAFETIES NEED COMPETITION
I'm a closet Qaddus fan, but it's probably because I'm growing tired of our overall poor safety play. Name the best safeties on this team since Sammy Knight. After Darren Sharper, the list is not pretty. (I have a special message for Tebucky Jones, but I don't think I can use that kind of language here.)
I really wish that Harper would be even decent in coverage. I think he's a solid tackler considering how slow he is, but his coverage skills are just awful. Maybe Vaccaro can motivate him to work harder, but at this point, he is what he is.
REASON #3: HE FILLS A HOLE
Kenny Vaccaro is an excellent option to cover a team with a dangerous TE. He isn't fast, but he's quick and physical and has the ability to beat you to the ball. Today's NFL has some athletic TEs (more coming in Eifert and Ertz) so someone just as athletic needs to be able to cover them. Our current safeties and LBs are not great at this skill, but Vaccaro could fit the role perfectly.
REASON #4: "SURE THINGS" GONE BY 15TH PICK
Congrats to Joeckel, Fisher, and Johnson,. The value on these 3 guys are rising so high that all three might be gone before pick 8. (Joeckel to Chiefs, Fisher to Eagles or Lions, and Johnson to Cardinals seem very realistic) The tackle spot can wait since these 3 guys will definitely be snagged before we get a shot. I like Jordan, Ansah and Mingo because of their potential/athletic ability, but we've seen this before with athletic guys. Sometimes, it doesn't end well in the NFL. (Vernon Gholston, that guy was a heck of an athlete) But still, I don't think any of those 3 guys will be available at 15. NTs? Are there any that are really worth a #15 pick? We know there aren't any 3-4 DEs worth that spot, and CB is always a reach in any season.
So, it should be Vaccaro. Because he's the safest pick. Agree? Or who is your safe probable pick at 15?