The 2022 NFL Draft is this Thursday in Las Vegas; it’s a time when college football’s best set their sights on a lifelong dream. It’s also a time when teams will need to reevaluate their rosters, especially from the quarterback position.
The New Orleans Saints is a team that lost Jameis Winston to injury early last season and now finds itself in the hot seat based on the number of draft picks the Saints have.
In the 2022 draft, New Orleans now will have two first-round picks (16th and 19th overall), one second-round pick (49th overall), one-third round compensatory selection (98th overall), one fourth-round pick (120th overall), one fifth-round pick (161st overall) and one sixth-round pick (194th overall).
Kurt Warner Believes In Jameis
So do the Saints look to replace their QB or roll the dice on Jameis? Former QB Kurt Warner weighed in on this on “The Rich Eisen Show” on the NFL Network.
“How sold are you on these guys to be the next guy? You mention the Saints, who obviously have a couple of draft picks there to be able to do that,” Warner said. “I look at Jameis Winston, and I say, ‘No, I’m, going to build a team around Jameis Winston because I’ve seen Jameis at this level do a lot of good things.’
“I know, he’s got to get out of his own way, and he’s got to get better at protecting the football. We all understand that. But what I’ve seen on tape from Jameis Winston to me is better than what I’ve seen from any of these guys, so I don’t do that. I had Jameis for that partial — what he did last year for a few games — and I thought he was doing some really good things in that time period.”
HALL OF FAME QB Kurt Warner raving about Jameis Winston 🔥🔥🔥
Eisen (paraphrase): Would you trade up for a QB if you're Saints?
Warner: "I look at Jameis Winston and I say no I'm not; I'm going to build a team around Jameis Winston."
🎧from 5:54 – 8:12https://t.co/sgt1ZYpkjX
— Author Jameis1of1 (@jameis1of1) April 25, 2022
“You have a good team, and you’ve got those picks; I stay where I’m at if I’m the Saints because I’m not necessarily convinced that the guy I go up and get is better than the guy I have in the building, right now. You don’t want to mortgage a whole bunch of stuff and give away draft picks that can get you some really, really good football players unless you’re sold on that QB being better than what you have.”
According to the NFL Network, the New Orleans Saints re-signed Winston to a two-year, $28 million contract with $21 million in guarantees. Winston’s getting a $14 million signing bonus. Winston, a free agent, got re-signed after the Saints fell short in their attempt to acquire Deshaun Watson.
Winston is returning to Who Dat Nation for a third straight season. He spent the first five years of his career with NFC South-rival the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which drafted him No. 1 overall in 2015.
— NOLA (@RealSuperNola) April 20, 2022
Bullish On Winston
Although Warner was bullish on Winston, he extolled the virtues of University of Cincinnati QB Desmond Ridder, who dropped a 4.25-second 40-yard dash time at the Combine.
“I’m not sold on any of the guys necessarily; again, I think there are things that are intriguing. Desmond Ridder, I think he does some things. You hear about his maturity and his leadership, which goes a long way, but I don’t feel like he plays the position athletically enough, and I know that’s kind of a relative term because it’s not about how far he runs or quick he is; it’s about being able to control the ball with his body.
“When you watch Aaron Rodgers, and you watch Patrick Mahomes throw from these different platforms and can do things like that almost effortlessly, I think you should play the position that way. So I worry about some of those different throws from Desmond Ridder, so I’m not fully convinced there.”
Kurt Warner agrees with the Saints, and on Draft night the team will show how committed they are to their QB.