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Saints reopen Ohio State pipeline in way-too-early 2025 mock draft

It’s too early to seriously predict which players might be picked in the 2025 NFL draft, but the event draws interest year-round and speculation won’t slow down just because we’re in a quiet stretch on the calendar.

The latest way-too-soon 2025 mock draft comes from Curt Popejoy over at Draft Wire. While the New Orleans Saints have a solid position at No. 9 (which would be the payoff for struggling through a hard-to-watch season with fewer wins than losses), in this projection New Orleans passed on every quarterback in the draft. The first passer, Georgia’s Carson Beck, wasn’t drafted until No. 16.

For all the talk about next year’s class being better (which is a popular draft narrative every year, whether it’s true or not) there’s a real possibility the Saints could be stuck with mediocrity under center. If the Saints are bad enough to be picking this high, it’s because Derek Carr is playing poorly enough to be replaced.

Instead of drafting Beck or any other quarterback to replace Derek Carr, the Saints started this mock draft by spending the ninth overall pick on his Georgia teammate: left tackle Earnest Greene III. That pick is easy to understand. New Orleans has struggled to get much out of Trevor Penning after drafting him in 2022’s first round, and he’s now moving to right tackle while their 2024 first rounder, Taliese Fuaga, is being asked to play on the left side. If Penning is a total bust and Fuaga has to move back to his college position, it makes sense to draft a true left tackle to man that spot. Maybe the vision is for Spencer Rattler or Jake Haener to push Carr for the starting gig in 2025.

While that first-round pick makes plenty of sense, it’s easier to get excited about the Saints’ haul in Round 2. They selected Ohio State running back TreVeyon Henderson at No. 41 overall, making him the sixth running back to be picked in the first two rounds. That would be a huge shift after just one running back was drafted in that range this year.

Henderson has been a big-play threat at Ohio State, scoring 32 touchdown runs while picking up 10 or more yards on 71 of his 445 career rushing attempts. He’s averaged an impressive 6.2 yards per carry with the Buckeyes. There’s a real possibility that Alvin Kamara won’t be on the team next year (between his contract status and ) so the Saints could be on the lookout for a new lead running back. That’s the vision for Kendre Miller but he needs to prove he can handle that kind of workload after injuries interrupted his rookie year. Either way, someone like Henderson could be on their radar in 2025.

Story originally appeared on Saints Wire