Round 2, 40th Overall: Mazi Smith, DL, Michigan
The New Orleans Saints have a few things to work out along the defensive line. Where will Payton Turner stick? How much does bringing Tanoh Kpassagnon back matter? Carl Granderson has done well in spurts.
The real issue exists on the interior, where David Onyemata is getting $10 million from the Saints whether he’s back or not. They don’t have much on the interior at all right now, and Mazi Smith would be an anchor up front. The 6’3″, 323-pound defensive tackle can eat space and take on double teams up front. Athletically, Smith has upside to wreak havoc as a rusher as he continues to develop a rush repertoire up front.
Round 3, 71st Overall: Zach Harrison, EDGE, Ohio State
Yes, we mentioned how much the New Orleans Saints have on the edge, but we don’t know where Turner fits best just yet. Cam Jordan is doing great things, but looking to the future with Marcus Davenport likely gone in free agency matters. Luckily, as others take reps in 2023, Zach Harrison can develop the toolbox as well.
Harrison is a big, long edge rusher who flashes impressive power at the point of attack and can overwhelm tackles with said power. The athleticism is there to hone in his skill set to be a dynamic pass rusher at the next level.
Round 4, 115th Overall: Roschon Johnson, RB, Texas
Yes, it’s running back for the New Orleans Saints here in the fourth round of this 2023 NFL Mock Draft. We don’t know a lot about what’s going to happen with Alvin Kamara as he faces legal issues. Behind him? Not much. So, why not capitalize on the 2023 NFL Draft class at running back here? Roschon Johnson packs a ton of power, often moonlighting as a bowling ball with defenders cosplaying as pins. He also has breakaway speed at 219 pounds, and has impressive footwork and processing skills, not to mention good ball security (one fumble in four seasons).
The converted quarterback also sticks his nose in the run game, often playing the part of lead blocker for Bijan Robinson and acting as the split zone blocker taking on defensive lineman. It’s impressive. Get him in the building.