As we approach the 2016 NFL Draft, many mock drafts -- especially the ones done by our talented experts here at NFL Media -- are linking the New Orleans Saints to Louisville defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins. However, there are plenty linking the Saints with a quarterback, too.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport noted earlier this week that the Saints had internal discussions about moving up to No. 1, and also hinted that the team could move up into the top 10 to make a play for Memphis QB Paxton Lynch.
Both moves make plenty of sense. The Saints need to rebuild their defense, especially up front. They also need to brace for the possibility that a contract extension doesn't get done with 2017 free agent Drew Brees, who is already set to count $30 million against the Saints' salary cap this season and who would be a financial anchor if the team attempted to apply the franchise tag next year.
"I learned a long time ago to worry about the things that I can control," Brees said, via NOLA.com. "It wouldn't be the first time that I've been on a team where they took a quarterback in the first round ... to come take my position and I would take the exact same approach now that I did then, which is, it's my team, it's my job.
"I don't think there's any use in talking about it because I doubt it would happen. And if it did, I trust our organization. I trust general manager Mickey (Loomis) and (coach) Sean Payton. If there's somebody there that you feel like is going to be the future of our organization for years to come, then take him, but I don't plan on giving up my job anytime soon."
On Tuesday, Brees appeared on NFL Network and said that discussions on a new contract are ongoing, and that he sees himself playing 'quite a few more' years in the NFL.
The details of that extension -- if and when it comes -- should provide clarity on Brees' future. The Saints' quarterback is still playing at a high level despite some shoulder issues that forced him to miss a start last year -- the first time he did not play 16 games since 2009.
Thursday's draft will bring a lot of clarity, too.