The New England Patriots were patient during the 2021 NFL Draft. They didn’t trade up to get a quarterback, and they wound up getting Mac Jones at No. 15, the guy many thought was the best fit for their system. While Jones slipped past a few teams who might have been inclined to draft the Alabama star, the New Orleans Saints were reportedly poised to jump ahead of the Patriots to select the quarterback.
According to The Athletic’s Michael Lombardi, the Saints, charged by the blessing of legendary coach and quarterback guru Sean Payton, were trying to jump the Patriots in line to select Jones.
“[New Orleans] was trying to get above New England to get Mac Jones.”
– NFL Draft Recap, Days 2 & 3
– Notable picks and moves
– Browns, Carolina, Dallas & more
– Kentucky Derby
— Michael Lombardi (@mlombardiNFL) May 3, 2021
The Saints settled for another quarterback later in the draft, but they took some flack for their decision.
The Saints Reached for Notre Dame’s Ian Book
After the Saints couldn’t get Jones, they chose to address the position in the fourth round with a selection of Notre Dame’s Ian Book. Many experts criticized the Saints’ choice. The CBS Sports Fantasy Football panel, including former NFL quarterback Danny Kanell slammed the pick.
The choice was given a grade of a D+ by CBS Sports’ Chris Trapasso.
The Athletic’s Dane Brugler was a little nicer with his summary of Book, but as you can see following his summary, he has the Notre Dame alum projected as a fifth or sixth-rounder.
A three-year starter at Notre Dame, Book had his most efficient season as a senior in offensive coordinator Tommy Rees’ scheme and showed noticeable growth in his final year. A two-time team captain, he posted a 30-5 career record (15-0 at home) and leaves South Bend No. 2 (behind Brady Quinn) in almost every passing category, including yards (8,948) and touchdowns (72). Although undersized, Book is a gutsy dual-threat passer with quick feet and natural throwing skills on the move. He is hesitant with his reads from the pocket and he is at his best on three-step drops, which call for quick timing throws. Overall, Book needs to improve his trigger and touch as a …read more