Great Players The Saints Could Have Drafted: Tom Jackson
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 1973 NFL Draft.
In the third round, with the 66th-overall pick, the Saints selected BYU running back Pete Van Valkenberg.
Not exactly a good pick, as Van Valkenberg didn't play a single game for the franchise, and played only 24 total games in the NFL.
22 picks later, with the 10th pick of the fourth round, and the 88th-overall selection, the Denver Broncos took Louisville linebacker Tom Jackson.
It was an outstanding pick by the Broncos, as Jackson turned out to be a mainstay on their defense for much of the 70's and 80's.
A 3-time Pro Bowler, Jackson helped Denver to two Super Bowl appearances.
In 14 seasons, all with the Broncos, Jackson compiled 20 interceptions, including 3 for touchdowns, in 191 career games.
Jackson, who has made a name for himself as an ESPN analyst for many years, was once an outstanding linebacker, and the Saints would have been a whole lot better had they drafted him before the Broncos.