Best New Orleans Saints Draft Choices From FBS Schools: Western Michigan
Who is the best player the New Orleans Saints ever drafted from the Western Michigan Broncos?
From May 1 until the start of the 2016 NFL season on September 11, we’re going to list the best players that the Saints ever drafted from all 128 FBS schools, as of 2015.
Of course, there are a number of schools, including Air Force, Appalachian St., Arizona, Army, Baylor, Boise St., Bowling Green, Buffalo, Central Florida, Central Michigan, East Carolina, FAU, FIU, Hawaii, ULM, Miami (Ohio), Marshall, Middle Tennessee, Navy, Nevada, New Mexico, New Mexico St., Ohio, Rice, Rutgers, San Jose St., South Alabama, South Florida, Southern Miss, TCU, Temple, Texas St., Toledo, Troy, and UTEP, in which the Saints have never drafted a player.
Earlier, we looked at the best player that the Saints ever drafted out of West Virginia.
Today, we spotlight the best player the Saints ever drafted from Western Michigan.
When it comes to deciding who the best player from Western Michigan, ever drafted by the Saints is, the choice is limited to offensive lineman Kevin Haverdink (1989) and defensive end/linebacker Joel Smeenge (1990).
The pick is going to be Smeenge, a defensive end/linebacker, who played 5 years for the Saints, from 1990-1994.
A native of Holland, Michigan, Smeenge was selected by the Saints in the third round of the 1990 NFL Draft.
The 6-foot-6, 262-pound Smeenge played in 15 games as a rookie, mostly on special teams, before playing in 14 games in 1991, and 11 games in 1992.
1993 saw Smeenge have his best season as a member of the Saints, playing in 16 games, including 2 starts, while totaling 15 tackles, including one sack.
In 1994, his final year in New Orleans, Smeenge played in 16 games, including 2 starts, while compiling 6 tackles.
Smeenge left the Saints after the 1994 season, and signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars, where he had the most success of his career, racking up 34 sacks in 6 seasons, prior to retiring after the 2000 campaign.
In 5 seasons with the Saints, Smeenge appeared in 72 games, including 4 starts, accumulating 31 tackles, including 1.5 sacks.
In 11 NFL seasons, Smeenge appeared in 156 games, including 51 starts, totaling 182 tackles and 35.5 sacks.