Great Players The Saints Could Have Drafted: Franco Harris
The 2016 NFL Draft gets underway on Thursday, April 28, in Chicago, Illinois.
Between now and then, we’ll be looking back at some of the past drafts by the Saints, and some of the better players they passed up on when it was their turn to pick.
Of course, every NFL team has had their “steals” and “busts” over the years, as the NFL Draft is such an inexact science, but it’s kind of fun, and at times, agonizing, to look back and see what players they could have, and maybe even should have drafted.
Today, we go back to the 1972 NFL Draft.
In the first round, with the 8th-overall pick, the Saints selected Georgia offensive lineman Royce Smith.
Smith only played two seasons for the franchise, so that wasn't a good pick.
Five picks later, with the 13th-overall pick, the Pittsburgh Steelers took Penn St. running back Franco Harris.
It was a great pick by Pittsburgh, as Harris turned out to be one of the best running backs of the 1070's, helping the Steelers to four Super Bowl rings.
A 9-time Pro Bowler, Harris was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1990.
In 11 seasons with the Steelers, Harris rushed for 11,950 yards and 91 touchdowns.a
In12 NFL seasons, Harris accumulated 12,120 rushing yards and 9 touchdowns.
Before the Saints drafted Chuck Muncie and Tony Galbreath in 1976, they didn't have any running back to speak of.
Taking Harris in 1972 would have been a big boost to their offense.