The New Orleans Saints traded up in the second round of the 2019 NFL draft to select center Erik McCoy from Texas A&M. The three-year starter anchored the middle of the Aggies' offensive line as a team captain and paved the way for the SEC's leading rusher. In 2019 with the Saints, McCoy was the first rookie in franchise history to start at center in Week 1. Replacing the retired Max Unger, McCoy opened all 16 regular season contests and was named a PFWA All-Rookie. He backed up that strong start with another excellent campaign in 2020, starting all 16 regular-season games. He started 12 games in 2021.
The Saints' next selection in the 2019 NFL draft came during Round 4. With the 105th selection, the Saints took Florida standout C.J. Gardner-Johnson. Gardner-Johnson has appeared in 43 games, recording 160 tackles (121 solo), three sacks, five interceptions, 28 passes defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. He was named to the PWFA All-Rookie Team..
Selected in the sixth round out of Rutgers, Saquan Hampton contributed on defense and special teams in five contests in 2019, posting one stop for loss and is expected to compete for additional playing time at safety in 2020.
The Saints selected tight end Alize Mack (231) and linebacker Kaden Elliss (244) with their remaining selections.
Saints 2019 draft summary:
After trading away their first round pick back in 2018 to select Marcus Davenport, the Black & Gold selected McCoy with the 48th pick of the 2019 NFL Draft. The 93rd pick was traded to the Jets in exchange for Teddy Bridgewater and the right to select Hampton. The Saints' next selection came during the fourth round (105th overall) when they drafted Gardner-Johnson. New Orleans' final two picks came in the seventh round. Mack was drafted with the 231st pick and Elliss was selected with the 244th pick.
Check out photos from Nashville as the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft gets underway.
2019 New Orleans Saints draft picks:
|48||C||Erik McCoy (choice from Miami)||Texas A&M|
|105||S||C.J. Gardner-Johnson (choice from New York Jets)||Florida|
|231||TE||Alize Mack (choice from Cleveland)||Notre Dame|
2019 New Orleans Saints draft pick trades:
|Pick #||Trade Details|
|30||Traded to Green Bay along with No. 27 and No. 147 in the 2018 NFL Draft for the right to select Marcus Davenport with the 14th overall pick in 2018|
|93||Traded to the New York Jets in exchange for Teddy Bridgewater and the right to draft Saquan Hampton|