We’ve already recapped the New Orleans Saints draft history at No. 29 overall, their expected slot in Thursday’s first round, but they have made several more picks at their second-round choice at No. 40. The list includes a fan-favorite Super Bowl champion, so let’s dig into their history at this slot to get an idea of who they could find in the 2023 draft:
1987: WR Lonzell Hill, Washington
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Hill was a big-play threat in his rookie season, totaling 19 receptions for 322 yards (16.9 yards per catch) before settling into a regular role on the offense in 1988 and 1989. But he was limited to just 3 receptions in 13 games in 1990 and finished his player career with the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
1996: DB Je'Rod Cherry, California
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Cherry was never named a defensive starter for the Saints, but his efforts on special teams allowed him to hang around the league until the signed with the New England Patriots in 2001 — where he went on to win three Super Bowl rings while playing a critical role covering punts and kickoffs.
1998: TE Cam Cleeland, Washington
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Cleeland started every game in his rookie year, totaling 54 receptions for 684 yards with 6 touchdown catches, but injuries limited him later on and he wound up signing with the New England Patriots and St. Louis Rams, where he appeared in 53 games over four years. It’s really impressive that he was still able to achieve a successful career after suffering a fractured eye socket and permanent vision damage during an infamous rookie hazing incident.
2005: FS Josh Bullocks, Nebraska
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Bullocks was a solid starter in the Saints secondary, starting 49 of his 62 games and intercepting 6 passes with 4 forced fumbles. After playing out his four-year rookie deal, he spent two years with the Chicago Bears and briefly joined the Raiders before calling it a career.
2008: CB Tracy Porter, Indiana
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Porter made one of the most famous plays in franchise history by intercepting Brett Favre to force the NFC championship game into overtime, only to follow that up a few weeks later with the game-winning pick-six off of Peyton Manning in Super Bowl XLIV. That doesn’t tell the whole story, though. Porter started 88 of the 98 regular season games he played in the NFL, suiting up with Denver, Oakland, Washington, and Chicago after moving on from New Orleans.