How did Saints do in draft value relative to 2023 consensus board?
It’s near-impossible to say whether the New Orleans Saints reached on some prospects in the 2023 NFL draft (no matter what Mel Kiper Jr. says), but we can still take a stab at it. Each year, Pro Football Network’s Arif Hasan manages a consensus board made up of dozens of player rankings from around the NFL’s media landscape, and there’s a lot we can learn from the wisdom of the crowd.
We just need to keep in mind that everyone has different opinions and their own personal rankings. There are 32 different boards around the league, and there can even be wide differences of opinion within draft rooms as coaches, scouts, and front office personnel debate their stances.
So this is more a thought exercise than a judgment. Here’s where each Saints draft pick was selected, where they ranked on the consensus board, and the difference in value:
This shows that the Saints drafted just one player near the slot that draft media anticipated: Bresee, at the end of Round 1. Foskey and Saldiveri were both expected to be picked in Rounds 2 and 4, respectively, just not as early as the Saints moved to get them. That’s also true of Haener but positional value as a quarterback skews things differently, Miller was taken a round sooner than they projected him to go off the board.
Biggest reach: Howden
Biggest steal: Perry
Howden was perceived as someone who may have not even been drafted, based off media rankings, while the analysts were way off on Perry. The Wake Forest wide receiver was commonly projected to be picked in Round 3 but he fell down two frames, so there was quite a disconnect in how NFL teams and outside analysts valued him. Ironically, if Howden and Perry’s draft slots were swapped it would run much closer to the media expectation.
But that’s not the case, and this is just one exercise. At the end of the day the Saints made moves to get players they valued, trading up to select Saldiveri, Haener, and Perry because they didn’t believe those guys would be available at their next picks. We’ll see how it works out, but Mickey Loomis, Jeff Ireland, and the Saints scouting department has hit often enough to earn some benefit of the doubt, even if some experts aren’t eager to endorse that strategy.
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