Brian Allee-Walsh

Saints get Wisconsin tackle and Florida Atlantic defensive end for Brandin Cooks

Saints columnist Brian Allee-Walsh
Saints columnist Brian Allee-Walsh Biloxi

Now we can add names, faces and resumes to complete the compensation in the blockbuster trade between the New Orleans Saints and New England Patriots.

Back on March 10, Saints officials sent shockwaves through the NFL when they dealt speedy, young wide receiver Brandin Cooks and a fourth-round pick to the defending Super Bowl champions for the 32nd overall pick and a third-round pick (No. 103).

With the 32nd pick of the 2017 NFL Draft, the Saints selected Wisconsin tackle Ryan Ramczyk. With the 103rd pick, they acquired Florida Atlantic defensive end Trey Hendrickson.

Neither player will increase season ticket sales or likely improve the Saints chances of winning Super Bowl LII. But one thing is certain: Neither will score points as readily as Cooks did for the Saints: 21 touchdowns in three seasons. But Ramczyk and Hendrickson can still help determine a game's outcome.

One day, perhaps sooner than later, Ramczyk will play a supporting role in a prolific Saints offense led by quarterback Drew Brees, and Hendrickson could help a historically bad defense get its act together and prevent opponents from scoring, say, under 30 points on a consistent basis.

We know everything there is to know about Cooks.

Here is the early lowdown on Ramczyk and Hendrickson.

▪ Ramcyzk: The second tackle drafted behind Utah's Garett Bolles at No. 20, he appears to be the heir apparent to replace Saints right tackle Zach Strief, who turns 34 on Sept. 22. Ramczyk, 6-foot-6, 310 pounds started all 14 games last season at Wisconsin. As a left tackle, he earned All-American honors after allowing one sack and eight QB pressures. He also is regarded as a strong run blocker. The concerns are his one-year sample at a Power 5 school and recovery from hip surgery in January that prevented him from testing before the draft.

▪ Hendrickson: Has exceptional burst off the edge with a variety of effective pass-rushing moves. Level of competition comes into question and did just OK at the East-West Shrine game against draft-quality offensive tackles. Pass rushers outside the first round historically don't fare well in the NFL but Hendrickson (6-4, 270) may be an exception because of his stellar physical qualities. Does he whet Who Dat Nation's pre-draft appetite for an edge pass-rusher? Probably not.

Time will tell.

All I know is NFC South quarterbacks Matt Ryan, Cam Newton and Jameis Winston probably didn't bat an eye with news of Hendrickson's selection by New Orleans.

Brian Allee-Walsh, a longtime Saints reporter based in New Orleans, can be reached at sports@sunherald.com.

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