Texas A&M's Erik McCoy Sure Seems Happy to Have Been Chosen to Solidify the Saints' Offensive Line Depth
Let me first say that I have nothing bad to say about the Saints' decision to trade up to get the guy they clearly wanted...
That's partially because Millennial Mickey and Shortsighted Sean have been given the middle finger to tomorrow on behalf of today for so many years running that the instant gratification has become a bit of an annual tradition, but it's mostly because they've gotten pretty damn good at it since the arrival of Jeff Ireland. After they left no shortage of heads being scratched by giving up future assets to jump up and select an underutilized playmaker by the name of Alvin Kamara from the University of Tennessee, despite already having a franchise leader and a Hall of Famer at his position, I have now grown to accept that questioning the front office's longstanding loathing of later is a fool's errand.
Now, as for the direction they chose to go after pulling an all-too-familiar trigger, it's tough not to feel comfortable in following along. As a petulant prioritizer of prospects that score points, I'd be lying if I said I had my sights set on Erik McCoy when Jahri Evans and Deuce McAllister took the stage early, but that doesn't make his presumed role any less relevant. With Max Unger kicking his feet up in retirement, Andrus Peat looking at one last year in New Orleans, and Nick Easton coming off a neck injury, the Saints' offensive line needed a youthful injection in an uncertain interior.
Who better to provide it then someone whose resume in neutralizing some of the best d-linemen college football has to offer in the SEC is pretty close to spotless? Add in a quality combine performance that spoke glowingly of what was already a well-documented ability to get out in space and take advantage of his athleticism, and it's really a wonder that Erik McCoy's name wasn't one that came up more often when discussing the interests of a screen and sweep happy team that values versatility. Another receiver would have been nice, seeing as some high-profile pass catchers were still on the board. However, the best weapon you can offer a quarterback, especially one with the accuracy and active eyesight of Drew Brees, will always be time and it doesn't read like Erik McCoy will need much of it before proving capable of starting at center.
As grateful as Erik McCoy is to have been taken by the Saints, the Saints sound just as grateful that he was there for the taking, which is really I needed to feel comfortable with an unglamorous selection that's being considered a steal by most that matter. Especially given the success that New Orleans has had in throwing caution to the wind after coming to the profound conclusion that you always have a full year before having to worry about next year.