Saints turn to basketball player

April, 23, 2010
4/23/10
10:09
PM ET
The New Orleans Saints just drafted a guy who played more basketball than football in college.

With the No. 95 pick overall, they selected Miami tight end Jimmy Graham. He spent three years playing college basketball before switching to football as a senior. Graham caught only 17 passes, but five of them were for touchdowns and he showed enough athleticism to convince the Saints he’s worth a third-round pick.

As weird as the basketball angle sounds, it’s really not that uncommon. Tony Gonzalez was a heck of a basketball player and he became the best tight end ever. With guys like Jeremy Shockey and David Thomas on the roster, the Saints have time to develop Graham. He’s got the tools to develop into something special.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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