When Jake Haener gets his first experience in the NFL, he’ll have a familiar face to look up to.
The former Fresno State quarterback was selected by the New Orleans Saints in the fourth round of the 2023 NFL Draft.
Driving the news: Haener had to wait until the third day of the draft to hear his name called, but the fourth round pick was right when he expected to go. Leading up to the draft, Haener told reporters that he was hearing teams would be interested in taking him in the third through fifth rounds.
- As the 127th overall pick, Haener was the sixth quarterback selected.
- The Saints traded up in the fourth round to grab the 127th pick from Jacksonville in order to draft Haener, sliding up one spot ahead of the Los Angeles Rams, who selected Georgia Quarterback Stetson Bennett with the very next pick.
State of play: New Orleans should be a natural fit for Haener, as he gets to join former Bulldog star quarterback Derek Carr.
- Carr recently signed with the Saints to be their starting quarterback after nine years with the Raiders.
What we’re watching: While Haener profiles as a backup in New Orleans behind Carr, he’ll have a battle on his hands to be the No. 2 quarterback on the Saints.
- After agreeing to a deal with Carr, the Saints restructured Jameis Winston’s contract to keep him on as the backup quarterback.
- Winston’s contract will be up after the 2023 season, putting Haener in prime position to be Carr’s leading backup in 2024.