New Orleans Saints
Coach: Sean Payton
OC: Pete Carmichael Jr.
QB: Drew Brees, Taysom Hill, Teddy Bridgewater, JT Barrett
RBs: Alvin Kamara, Latavius Murray, Javorius Allen, Dwayne Washington, Devine Ozigbo, Matt Dayes
FBs: Zach Line, Mike Burton, Garrett Griffin
WRs: Michael Thomas, Tre’Quan Smith, Ted Ginn, Keith Kirkwood, Cameron Meredith, Rishard Matthews, Emmanuel Butler, Simmie Cobbs Jr, Travin Dural, Cyril Grayson, Deonte Harris, Lil’Jordan Humphrey
TEs: Jared Cook, Josh Hill, Dan Arnold, Alize Mack, Nate Wozniak
2019 Draft (offense only):
Round 2, Pick 48 – C – Erik McCoy – Texas A&M
Round 7, Pick 231 – TE – Alize Mack – Notre Dame
2019 Undrafted Free Agents (fantasy offense only):
RB – Devine Ozigbo – Nebraska
WR – Emmanuel Butler – Northern Arizona
WR – Deonte Harris – Assumption College
WR – Lil’Jordan Humphrey – Texas
Key Offseason Additions (fantasy offense):
RB – Latavius Murray
RB – Dwayne Washington
RB – Javorius Allen
RB – Matt Dayes
WR – Rishard Matthews
TE – Jared Cook
Training Camp Preview: Rookies 7/18, Veterans 7/25
Sean Payton enters his 14th season as the head coach. His OC Pete Carmichael is entering his 11th season. It’s quite impressive to see these two stick together for that long. The Saints ranked 8th in total offense last year, 12th in passing and 6th in rushing. I think we’ll continue to see more balance from the Saints this year as Drew Brees enters 19th season at age 40.
Brees finished as the QB8 last year. He has declined in pass attempts and passing yards for two straight years now. He did throw for 32 TDs last year after throwing just 23 the year before. He also rushed for a career high four TDs last year as well. He has an ADP around QB7 and is being drafted at his ceiling. I’m not too excited about drafting a 40 year old quarterback, even if it’s somebody in a potent offense like this. Tom Brady is a different story because his ADP is around QB18. I’d rather wait a round for Russell Wilson or Cam Newton if I’m targeting QB in the mid-rounds. His backups are Teddy Bridgwater and Taysom Hill. We’ll see Hill mixed in occasionally like we did last year. JT Barrett is the fourth QB.
Not much needs to be said about Alvin Kamara, another consensus top four pick. With Mark Ingram now in Baltimore, the team signed Latavius Murray. Murray is not as good as Ingram, so it’s reasonably to expect a few more carries from Kamara this year. Kamara’s usage in the passing game will be the biggest asset again. I’m actually into the idea of spending a mid-round pick on Latavius Murray. His ADP is around RB36. He’ll get enough volume to be a flex consideration and should see more work in the passing game than what’s he’s used to. After these two, they signed Javorius Allen and have Dwayne Washington back. Matt Dayes was also signed this off-season and he’ll compete with UDFA Devine Ozigbo for the final roster spot.
It’s all about Michael Thomas at WR for the Saints. He set career highs last year in targets, receptions and yards. The Saints really didn’t have any other pass catchers besides Kamara, so Drew Brees locked in on Thomas. The addition of Jared Cook could take away some targets, along with the development of second year wide-out Tre’Quan Smith. He also experienced an insanely high catch percentage of 85%, a number that is sure to come down. Thomas finished as the WR6 last year and is being drafted as high as WR3. For me, this is too high. Thomas makes sense if you want to go with a WR/WR start from the 12 spot and have him as your WR2. The possible decline of Brees is another reason I’m avoiding Thomas at ADP, and targeting Julio Jones and Juju Smith-Schuster instead. Tre’Quan Smith is the number two receiver and can have value for us this year. He’s a better best ball pick than a redraft target though. Ted Ginn is back as the deep threat but should not be trusted either. We’ll have to watch the camp battle for the back up roles between Keith Kirkwood, Cameron Meredith, and Rishard Matthews. Guys trying to make the team include Emmanuel Butler, Simmie Cobbs, Travin Dural, Cyril Grayson, Deonte Harris and Lil’Jordan Humphrey.
The Saints signed Jared Cook in free agency. Cook is coming off of a career year and is a nice target for your TE1 in redraft leagues this year. He has an ADP of around TE8. Brees has been successful with TEs like Jimmy Graham and even Ben Watson, so I’m open to Cook have top 5 upside this year. Behind Cook, the Saints have Josh Hill and Dan Arnold. They drafted Alize Mack in the 7th round out of Notre Dame, definitely a player to watch for in pre-season action. Nate Wozniak rounds out the group.
2017-2018 Stats Below: