ESPN NFL Insider Mike Sando gathered together some of ESPN’s top talent evaluators for this detailed breakdown of each team’s performance so far in free agency (which requires Insider access).
Sando gave the Saints a B-minus, though he admitted the grade is conservative because they’ve made so many bold moves and still have a lot of draft picks that will become part of the overall picture.
I loved what ESPN scouting Insider Matt Williamson said on that front: "People will downgrade them in free agency and then laud them in the draft, but what they do in the draft is because of what they did in free agency.”
The other analysts – Louis Riddick, Bill Polian and Field Yates – broke down the pluses and minuses, naturally sharing concerns about trading away Jimmy Graham in his prime. But they recognized the Saints were willing to sacrifice offensive horsepower to improve their physicality and defense. And the overall tone was cautious optimism.