Ranking the New Orleans Saints’ top draft needs. At No. 5 is cornerback:
Current depth chart:
Keenan Lewis, age 29
Delvin Breaux, age 26
Damian Swann, age 23
Kyle Wilson, age 28
Brian Dixon, turns 26 on Tuesday
P.J. Williams, age 22
Tony Carter, age 29
Brandon Dixon, turns 26 on Tuesday
Outlook: The Saints obviously see some benefit in the idea of adding a top-notch cornerback, since they finished second in the Josh Norman sweepstakes on Friday.
But as I wrote, I think that was mostly about Norman being a special player. It doesn’t automatically signal that New Orleans will target a cornerback in Round 1 or Round 2. And it certainly doesn’t signal that they’re eager to replace Lewis or Breaux in the starting lineup.
The Saints may well decide to draft another special cornerback in Round 1 – maybe Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves III or Houston’s William Jackson III. Their pass defense could obviously use some reinforcements after they set the NFL record for TD passes allowed last year (45). And they’ve learned the hard way in recent years that you can never have enough talent at cornerback in today’s pass-happy NFL, especially when injuries come into play.
But if the Saints don’t wind up with a corner in the first two days of the draft, they’ve still got decent depth at the position, with Lewis returning from the hip injury that plagued his 2015 season and promising second-year pros Swann (concussion) and Williams (hamstring) also returning from injuries.