The New Orleans Saints have gotten the most out of their 2017 rookie draft class.
Rookie running back Alvin Kamara and cornerback Marshon Lattimore are frontrunners for offensive and defensive rookie of the year awards.
But the seven-player draft class runs much deeper than that.
Analytics website FiveThirtyEight.com rated the Saints’ 2017 NFL Draft class as the NFL’s best since 2000, based on a per-player impact during his rookie season.
When using Pro-Football-Reference.com’s Approximate Value metric — that gives each player a single-number value regardless of position — the Saints’ rookie class has a 6.1 per-player value, which is higher than any other draft class since at least the 2000 season.
The Saints’ cumulative draft class value ranked only behind the Dallas Cowboys’ nine-player class in 2016 and the New England Patriots’ 12-player class in 2010.
For reference, the per-player value for the Saints’ eight-player class in 2006, widely regarded as the best in recent years, was 4.25, nearly two full points below the 2017 class.
The FiveThirtyEight.com site also included a percentage breakdown of rookie draft class contributions by each team.
Read more from FiveThirtyEight.com about the Saints’ draft class here.