5 for 4, Saints sign picks to contracts

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — New Orleans Saints Executive Vice President/General Manager Mickey Loomis announced today that the club has signed quarterback Spencer Rattler, wide receiver Bub Means, linebacker Jaylan Ford, defensive tackle Khristian Boyd and tackle Josiah Ezirim to four-year contracts.

Rattler, 6-0, 211, was selected by the Saints in the fifth round (150th overall) of the 2024 NFL Draft out of South Carolina. In five seasons at Oklahoma (2019-21) and South Carolina (2022-23), the Phoenix, Ariz. native completed 900-of-1,313 passes (68.5 pct.) for 10,807 yards with 77 touchdowns and 32 interceptions and rushed for 16 scores.

A two-time team captain at South Carolina after transferring from Oklahoma, Rattler started all 12 games in 2023 and completed 275-of-389 passes (70.1 pct.) for 3,186 yards with 19 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He was invited to the Reese’s Senior Bowl, where he was selected as the game’s Most Valuable Player. In 2022, he started all 13 games in his first season with the Gamecocks, completing 264-of-399 passes (66.2 pct.) for 3,026 yards with 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. In 2020, as a redshirt freshman, Rattler started all 11 games in his second year at Oklahoma, completing 214-of-317 passes (67.5%) for 3,031 yards with 28 touchdowns and just seven interceptions, also adding seven rushing scores. He was named national Freshmen of the Year by CBS Sports and earned All-Big 12 honors and co-Big 12 Newcomer of the Year.

Means, 6-2, 215, was selected by the Saints in the fifth round (170th overall) of the 2024 NFL Draft out of Pittsburgh. After starting his college career as a defensive back at Tennessee in 2019, the Lovejoy, Ga. native spent two seasons at Louisiana Tech (2020-1) and his final two collegiate campaigns at Pitt (2022-23), recording career totals of 90 receptions for 1,552 yards (17.2 avg.) and ten touchdowns.

In 2023, Means started played in all 12 games with ten starts for Pittsburgh and was an All-ACC honorable mention selection, catching 41 passes for 721 yards (17.6 avg.) and six touchdowns. In his first year at Pitt in 2022 after transferring from Louisiana Tech, Means totaled 27 receptions for 401 yards (14.9 avg) and two scores. In 2021, his final season with the Bulldogs, he added 22 receptions for 430 yards (team-high 19.6 yards per catch) and two touchdowns, while adding 244 yards on kickoff returns.

Ford, 6-2, 240, was selected by the Saints in the fifth round (175th overall) of the 2024 NFL Draft out of Texas. In four seasons with the Longhorns, Ford started 29-of-49 games and recorded 287 tackles, 27.5 stops for loss, three sacks, ten passes defensed, six interceptions, four forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries.

In 2023, Ford was a Butkus Award semifinalist, consensus first-team All-Big 12 selection and honorable mention All-American. He started all 14 games and totaled 101 tackles, 10.5 stops for loss, one sack, two interceptions, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. He became the first Longhorn with back-to-back 100-tackle seasons since the 2010-11 campaigns and was an integral piece of a Texas team that won the Big 12 Championship and advanced to the College Football Playoff for the first time since it began in 2014. In 2022, the Frisco, Texas native was a first-team All-Big 12 selection and named a third-team All-American by the Associated Press after posting a career-best 119 tackles, two sacks, three forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and four interceptions. He recorded double-digit stops seven times and his 119 tackles were the most for a Longhorn since 2014.

Boyd, 6-2, 320, was selected by the Saints in the sixth round (199th overall) of the 2024 NFL Draft out of Northern Iowa. During his collegiate career, the Blue Springs, Mo. native appeared in 49 games and totaled 149 tackles, 22.5 stops for loss, 10.5 sacks, five passes defensed and two forced fumbles.

In 2023, Boyd was an All-Missouri Valley Football Conference first-team selection and a consensus FCS third team All-American (AP, STATS Perform, FCS Football Central) after starting all 11 games and posting 43 stops, 6.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and one pass defense. He was a consensus second-team All-MVFC selection in 2022, playing in ten contests and recording 32 tackles, five stops for loss, a sack, two passes defensed and two forced fumbles.

Ezirim was selected by the Saints in the seventh round (239th overall) of the 2024 NFL Draft out of Eastern Kentucky. The 6-6, 329-pound Hilliard, Ohio native began his college career on the defensive front before switching to offensive tackle, where he started 19 games in his last two seasons (2022-23) at right tackle. In 2023, Ezirim started all 11 games as part of the top-ranked offense in the United Athletic Conference (437.4 ypg.) on his way to being selected an Associated Press third-team All-American, first-team All-UAC by league coaches and Phil Steele’s UAC Offensive Lineman of the Year.

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