NEW ORLEANS - The NFL draft begins Thursday night. With the Saints facing major penalties in the aftermath of the bounty scandal, could the selection process be more critical to the team this year than most?
There is no pick for the Saints in round one.
In fact, the team's first pick will be the 89th in 2012's draft, which will be during round three on Friday night. Then, the Saints will have selections in the fourth, fifth and sixth rounds. Their final chance to snag a player for the coming season will be pick 234 in the seventh round.
Following the bounty penalties against the coaches and administration, there are so many uncertainties about this year's Saints team.
Fans have been waiting for the other shoe to fall for the players. But NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the player punishment announcements won't come this week.
Interim Head Coach Joe Vitt said they have been making plans concerning the draft, the season and the Super Bowl.
"Our draft board is set. Our core beliefs are set. The kind of guys we want are set. Nothing changes. The program is set," Vitt said.
Round one of the draft begins at 7 p.m. Rounds two and three will be held Friday night, and rounds four through seven start Saturday.