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2015 NFL Draft Results: Grading the Hau'oli Kikaha Pick

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With their second round pick, the Saints have selected Hau'oli Kikaha. How do you grade the pick?

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

With the 44th overall selection in the 2015 NFL Draft, the New Orleans Saints have selected Washington outside linebacker, Hau'oli Kikaha.

Here is a look at the newest Saint, from NFL.com:

STRENGTHS

Relentless. Bends the edge hard. Plays with his hand on the ground and stands up. Scheme versatile. Best fit is in 3-4. Intelligent player. Saw a streak of 14 consecutive games with a sack broken at Arizona in 2014. Excellent with his hands, possessing a variety of techniques. Was a judo champion when he was younger and a high school wrestler, so he understands hand placement and leverage. Good change of direction. Maintains low center of gravity on his rush without losing his wheels. Ability to recover and get back into a play.

WEAKNESSES

Can get swallowed up in the run game at defensive end. Has had knee issues in prior seasons. Perceived as a one-trick pony (pass-rush specialist). Upfield specialist and doesn't set the edge consistently. Needs work on playing consistently in space. Gets overly aggressive at times. Has had two ACL injuries and medicals will need to be scrutinized.

BOTTOM LINE

Kikaha is the most accomplished pure pass rusher in this draft class. Relies on a relentless motor off the edge more than athleticism. He has an elite determination to get to the quarterback. While he seems to specialize in just rushing the passer, Kikaha has the power, hands and frame to improve against the run. It might take some work to get fully comfortable as a stand-up 3-4 OLB, but Kikaha is a very safe draft prospect as long as his medicals check out.

What do you think Who Dat Nation?  Do you love, like, or loathe this selection?  Give us your take in our poll, and leave us your insight and opinions below!

Saints Draft Picks

  • 13th Overall (Round 1) - Andrus Peat, OT, Stanford
  • 31st Overall (Round 1) - Stephone Anthony, ILB, Clemson
  • 44th Overall (Round 2) - Hau'oli Kikaha, OLB, Washington
  • 75th Overall (Round 3)
  • 78th Overall (Round 3)
  • 148th Overall (Round 5)
  • 154th Overall (Round 5)
  • 187th Overall (Round 6)
  • 230th Overall (Round 7)

Saints Remaining Team Needs

  • Cornerback
  • Inside Linebacker
  • Outside Linebacker
  • Wide Receiver
  • Offensive Tackle
  • Quarterback of the future