Keep in mind, the initial numbers can change contingent upon currently claimed numbers becoming available if another player doesn’t make the roster or a bevy of other reasons. But for now, the rooks have their digits.
Let’s start with the draft picks.
Defensive End Payton Turner - #98
Houston DE Payton Turner keeps his collegiate number with 98. Turner wore this number all four season as the University of Houston, putting up 9.5 sacks and 23.5 tackles for a loss while doing so. The most recent #98 for the New Orleans Saints can be found without going further back than last year, the recently departed and now New York Jet Sheldon Rankins.
Cornerback Paulson Adebo - #29
Stanford cornerback and third round selection Paulson Adebo wore numbers 17 and 11 as a Cardinal. But now, he’ll rock number 29. That number was most recently worn by special teams ace Johnson Bademosi.
Quarterback Ian Book - #16
Fourth-round selection and winningest quarterback in Notre Dame history undergoes a number change in the pros as well. After wearing number 12 his entire career in South Bend, he’ll switch to 16. A familiar quarterback number worn by former Saints passer Ken Stabler. Likely them most notable Saint to wear this number though would be Lance Moore.
Offensive Tackle Landon Young - #67
University of Kentucky offensive tackle Landon Young will maintain his collegiate 67. Most recently that number was in the black and gold on the jersey of Larry Warford. Even though Warford’s tenure in New Orleans ended a bit messily, his career success is worth striving for.
Wide Receiver Kawaan Baker - #14
Kawaan Baker, the seven-round wide receiver from South Alabama landed with number 14. One of my favorite Saints tidbits comes from this number. back in 1979 the New Orleans Saints draft punter/kicker Russel Erxleben number 11 overall in the first round. Two picks ahead of Hall of Fame tight end Kellen Winslow and 71 selections before Joe Montana. Baker should quickly help make you forget about that fact as soon as he hits the training camp.
Linebacker Pete Werner - #20
And last, but certainly not least. Ohio State Linebacker Pete Werner becomes not only the first rookie of the Saints draft class, but the first New Orleans Saint period to take advantage of the NFL’s relaxed rules on jersey numbers. Werner will maintain his college number: 20. Tom Brady is going to be so mad.
UDFAs of Note
TE Dylan Soehner keep his number 89 from Iowa State. The number of recently retired former Saints tight end Josh Hill.
Safety Trill Williams will wear number 33. Most interestingly is his designation on the Saints’ roster as a safety as opposed to cornerback.
Nolan Cooney looks to be in line for the punter battle with one of last year’s UDFAs Blake Gillikin. Coming in to the NFL, he takes number 5. Leaving Thomas Morstead’s number 6 still untouched. Hard to imagine that number gets reused any time soon.
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