The Saints might have assembled the deepest roster of the Sean Payton era.
If you start ordering players, when you get somewhere around spots 45-50, you'll begin considering where to place players like Malcom Brown and Margus Hunt. Dwayne Washington might also be in the mix.
This is a significant difference from a couple of years ago, when, in 2017, guys like Hau'oli Kikaha and Adam Bighill were in that range. That team was outstanding, and the talent at the top of the depth chart was comparable and perhaps even better in some spots than this year's squad, but this team should be loaded top to bottom.
In previous seasons, I usually waited to publish a version of this exercise until the preseason. There wasn't enough information to separate the players into tiers without defaulting and putting nearly everyone "on the fence." This year is different. A lot of the players have been around for a while, and most of the newcomers are veterans with established track records.
So, without context, it might not mean much when I see 29 players who are locks to make the team this early because that number is close to other seasons. I had 29 players locked on the roster when I did this exercise before the first preseason game in 2018, and 27 locked in 2017. But that was after seeing weeks of practices. This list will swell once we get basic answers to questions like are Sheldon Rankins, Kiko Alonso and Alex Anzalone healthy?
There will probably be some names listed in spots that come as a surprise to some people. But it is supposed to be hard to be considered a lock. Those spots get reserved for players where it would knock you out of your chair if you saw them get cut.