A position-by-position look at the New Orleans Saints' draft needs, ranked in order of importance from 1-14:
Current depth chart:
Erik Lorig. Age 28. Signed through 2017.
Austin Johnson. Age 25. Scheduled to be exclusive-rights free agent in 2016.
Toben Opurum. Age 24. Scheduled to be exclusive-rights free agent in 2016.
Draft possibilities: The Saints have about as much depth at fullback as they’ve ever had in the Sean Payton era, and they only used a fullback on about 25 percent of their offensive snaps last year. So this likely won’t rank as a priority in the draft. However, I won’t completely rule it out since they still have room to upgrade.
Lorig was just decent after signing a four-year deal as a free agent last year -- but he has an excuse since he missed most of training camp and the first six games of the season with a significant ankle injury. The 6-foot-4, 250-pounder could potentially be used as a tight end/fullback hybrid in the passing game, which could add to his usefulness since the Saints are now thin at tight end.
Johnson, meanwhile, played very good in Lorig’s absence last year and might have won the job permanently if he hadn’t suffered his own season-ending knee injury in Week 8. This job battle should be neck-and-neck all summer.