The New Orleans Saints loaded up on first-round picks for the 2022 NFL Draft ahead of time. Now, with the clock ticking, which direction will New Orleans go with the 16th and 19th overall picks? How will they use them? In our final mock draft for the Saints, they combine them and get into the top 10 for a very specific need.
New Orleans Saints 2022 7-Round Mock Draft
Here are projections of every pick the New Orleans Saints could make within a 7-Round 2022 NFL Mock Draft with the Pro Football Network staff as the general manager. This is what we would do with the picks after the board shook out while doing a full 7-round, 32-team mock draft.
Round 1, Pick 9 (mock trade from DEN via SEA): Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
Mock Trade: The Saints send pick Nos. 16 and 19 to Seattle in exchange for pick Nos. 9 and 109.
Here we are — the biggest trade of this 2022 NFL Mock Draft. We all knew the New Orleans Saints had been loading up for something ahead of the draft after securing a second first-round pick. We just didn’t know it would be for Evan Neal as the big man from Alabama started to slide down the board. In this hypothetical trade, the Saints called the Giants, but New York wanted another first-round pick. Instead, in the middle of a rebuild, Seattle moves back to 16 and 19 while allowing the Saints to secure their biggest need.
Other players in consideration: Charles Cross, OT, Mississippi State
Round 2, Pick 49: Lewis Cine, S, Georgia
The safety class is loaded after Kyle Hamilton, and Lewis Cine is proof of that. Cine heads to the Saints to add a valuable coverage piece in New Orleans’ secondary. He can play either safety position or even a hybrid slot linebacker tasked with covering tight ends or running backs.
Other players in consideration: Jalen Pitre, S, Baylor; Verone McKinley III, S, Oregon
Round 3, Pick 98 (compensatory selection): Skyy Moore, WR, Western Michigan
The Saints made a splash in Round 1, trading up to secure a big need. They still have needs across a few positions, and Skyy Moore fixes a big one. Moore is much more than a pure slot receiver with a smaller frame. He can sky for the ball and come down with contested catches. His best attribute, however, is his ability to separate from defenders anywhere along his routes.
Other players in consideration: David Anenih, EDGE, Houston; Dominique Robinson, EDGE, Miami (OH); Kyle Philips, WR, UCLA
Round 4, Pick 190 (mock trade from NYJ via SEA): Ed Ingram, G, LSU
With their new pick from their trade up with the Seahawks, the Saints grab nearby prospect Ed Ingram from LSU. Andrus Peat is in the Bayou, but for how long? With his cap hit increasing to $11.8M in 2023, his time could be limited. Ingram gives them the body to potentially move on from Peat while also competing for snaps and improving the line from the right guard spot in the short term.
Other players in consideration: Lecitus Smith, G, Virginia Tech; Tyrese Robinson, G, Oklahoma
Round 4, Pick 120: Mykael Wright, CB, Oregon
It’s a mixture of veterans and potential stars in the Saints’ cornerback room. Mykael Wright enters the fray with potential stardom attached to his coverage ability as well. Wright is fast and plays faster. He also has documented success at covering bigger receivers from a variety of alignments.
Other players in consideration: Akayleb Evans, CB, Missouri; Alontae Taylor, CB, Tennessee
Round 5, Pick 161: Kaleb Eleby, QB, Western Michigan
The Saints selected Ian Book in the fourth round last year and signed Andy Dalton this offseason. With their QB situation in flux behind Jameis Winston, Kaleb Eleby being around at this point is a relatively easy decision. Eleby comes with the potential to develop into a starter. He has the arm talent that surpasses Book and can hit every level of the field. It seems the practice squad is the likely destination for Year 1 until 2023, and that may be the best for his developing game.
Other players in consideration: Joshua Ezeudu, OT/G, North Carolina; Alec Lindstrom, G/C, Boston College
Round 6, Pick 194 (from IND via PHI): Nick Ford, C/G, Utah
Much like their selection of Ingram, the Saints go back to the interior offensive line to grab the services of Nick Ford. A center by nature, Ford can play all three interior spots and could be part of a long-term plan to overhaul the interior offensive line in New Orleans.
Other players in consideration: Jaivon Heiligh, WR, Coastal Carolina; Allie Green IV, CB, Missouri