Quick Hit: Saints Mock Draft 2.0

The New Orleans Saints will be on the clock in two weeks and the anticipation is building. Saintsinsider.com will publish its second Mock Draft of the offseason on Friday. But today, here's a sneak peek at one of the selections our publisher, Matthew Postins, has made for the Saints. To see the entire mock draft, stop by Saintsinsider.com on Friday.

Did you miss Matthew Postins' first Saints-only Mock Draft? Click here to see if you agree with his Saints draft strategy.

Second round

Brandon Flowers, CB, Virginia Tech

First Mock Draft selection: DT Marcus Harrison, Arkansas.

Virginia Tech cornerback Brandon Flowers could be the perfect fit as a third cornerback in New Orleans' defense. (Miller Safrit/Scout.com)
Why?: Let's say the Saints address the linebacker position with their first pick. They'll still need to address the cornerback position at some point, and I think after whiffing on Usama Young last year, they'll look to take a young cornerback a little higher in 2008. That brings three likely selections — Kansas' Aqib Talib, Virginia Tech's Brandon Flowers and LSU's Chevis Jackson.

Jackson could slide into the third round after running only a 4.57 at his pro day. Plus, there are rumblings that Jackson would be better off at free safety, where his instincts, physical play and ball awareness would be a better fit. Talib isn't as polished as either player, and more than 51 percent of passes thrown his way last year were completed. Now, there are questions about Talib's off-the-field life after his admission that he tested positive for marijuana during college.

That leaves Flowers, who Marino called a "fast-twitch athlete" and a "short-area player." That means he's more quick than fast. Flowers runs consistently in the 4.5 range, so he could have issues with top-end receivers on deep routes. But, Marino said that Flowers makes up for that shortcoming with great ball skills, anticipation and instincts. Plus, he has a reputation as a hard-hitter that can help against the run.

The Saints have shored up the cornerback position by signing Randall Gay and Aaron Glenn. But they still need an injection of youth at the position, and Flowers would provide that. He could be an immediate contributor at the nickel corner position.

Alternate theory: The player getting the most love in mock drafts at this position is Auburn DT Pat Sims, so keep an eye on him. His stock has remained steady, but he hasn't had the most impressive offseason. Still, he's drawing comparisons to Minnesota DT Kevin Williams and has a reputation for shooting gaps well. Also keep an eye on Miami DE Calais Campbell here, a player being touted as a mid-second round pick who could offer the Saints' anemic pass rush some help.

Offensively, the Saints could stand pat here. They have the wide receivers they need and most of the mock drafts I've seen have one running back — Texas' Jamaal Charles — selected in the second round. The Saints would take a back if they release Deuce McAllister, and Charles doesn't fit the type of back the Saints would need in that scenario.

Saintsinsider.com has started its "Saints Scouting Report" series, profiling players the Saints could have interest in selecting on April 26-27. Catch up by checking out our reports on Glenn Dorsey, Jonathan Stewart, Mike Pollak and Tracy Porter.

New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton is already looking forward to seeing Jonathan Vilma in a Saints uniform this season. Find out what Payton had to say about the Saints' newest linebacker by clicking here.

Oregon running back Jonathan Stewart stopped by the Saints' training facility near New Orleans for a visit with the Saints on Tuesday. Stewart talked to saintsinsider.com about his visit. You can find out what Stewart thought of the Saints right here.

Saints head coach Sean Payton talked about his two top backs, Deuce McAllister and Reggie Bush, recently. What did he have to say about their statuses? Find out the full story by clicking here.

It's the most important time of the year for NFL teams that want to improve their roster for 2008. Are you getting all the analysis you need as the NFL Draft approaches? If you're not, click here to find out how you can become a Saintsinsider.com insider and become the expert at your NFL Draft party.

Matthew Postins is the publisher of Saintsinsider.com. He is an award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers Association.

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