In 2006 Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis put together one of the most stellar draft classes in recent Saints memory. A class that really set the foundation for Saints culture and turned the Saints into a winner as they made the NFC title game and only 3 years later they won their first Super Bowl in 2009. Let’s take a look at this historic draft class.
Reggie Bush, RB, USC 2nd overall pick
The former USC back put on quite the show during his time as a trojan and arguably was the greatest college football player ever. The hype was way too real and the moment the Texans shocked the world by taking Mario Williams first overall Reggie Bush was forever tied to the city of New Orleans. The tailback had overall 1300 all purpose yards and made an impact on this city and its fans more then any touchdown ever could.
Roman Harper,S, Alabama 43rd overall pick
The Saints used their second round pick on Alabama safety Roman Harper and despite his rookie season ending early Harper played 11 seasons and made 2 pro bowls in the black and gold. In 2011 Harper recorded 93 tackles and recorded 7.5 sacks and 13 quarterback hits which was something I had never seen from a safety at the time. Not only was he an excellent player, but also an excellent leader and helped mentor younger players like Malcom Jenkins and Vonn Bell. Despite playing in Carolina for a few seasons New Orleans will always be his home.
Jahri Evans, G, Bloomsberg 108th overall pick
I don’t even know where to begin with this selection, a small school guard ended up being one of the most dominant offensive lineman in NFL history. Evans went on to make 6 Pro Bowls, 4-time First-Team All-Pro, and made the 2010s all decade team. Out of 11 seasons Evans started in 16 games only 8 times and was truly one of the greatest and most complete interior offensive linemen in the history of the game.
Zach Strief, T, Northwestern 210th overall pick
Zach Strief is one of my favorite selections from this class. He came out of Northwestern University and didn’t start right away, but after Jon Stichcomb retired following the 2010 season Strief was ready to roll. He held it own for the next 7 seasons as the team’s right tackle and was a big part of all the records Drew Brees broke.
Marques Colston, WR, Hofstra, 252nd overall pick
Now the 3rd to last player selected in the draft was some little known wide receiver from the University of Hofstra. Unknown as he was, Colston went on the become one of the greatest players in Saints history, becoming the all time leader in franchise history in receiving yards, touchdowns, receptions, and scrimmage yards. Not too bad for a kid from Hofstra who nobody else except Sean Payton took a chance on.