Bryan Bresee: Grading the Saints’ No. 29 overall NFL Draft pick

29. New Orleans Saints - Bryan Bresee, DT, ClemsonSyndication Usa Today
29. New Orleans Saints - Bryan Bresee, DT, ClemsonSyndication Usa Today /

With the 2023 NFL Draft’s first round winding down on Thursday night, the New Orleans Saints finally got their first pick in at around 11:35 p.m. ET and they didn’t disappoint. They picked up a need on the defensive line, drafting the monster from Clemson, Bryan Bresee.

Bresee has had an interesting career, coming to Clemson in 2020 as the No. 1 overall recruit in the country and he didn’t disappoint right away.

During that COVID-19-affected season, he was able to finish with 23 total tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, and six sacks, earning Freshman All-American honors. He was a force on the interior and he caused problems for opposing offenses week in and week out.

Bresee suffered an ACL injury and only played in four games during the 2021 season, recording 13 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, and a sack. He didn’t quite look as dominant in 2022, finishing with 15 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, and 3.5 sacks in nine games. But you have to remember he was coming off a major knee injury.

The Saints like his upside and while I thought he may be a round two pick, this will immediately upgrade that defensive line.

Grading the Saints’ pick of Bryan Bresee

There’s a reason Bresee was the No. 1 overall recruit in 2020 and that’s because he’s a mountain of a man and just a beast on the inside. He can disrupt the run game and force some quick throws and uncomfortable pockets for quarterbacks.

The Saints just need to hope he gets back to his 2020 and pre-injury self because if he does, he could be a Pro Bowler.

Grade: B

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