METAIRIE, La. (AP) – The New Orleans Saints have selected Texas safety Kenny Vaccaro with their first-round pick in in the NFL draft.
The selection of the 6-foot, 214-pound Vaccaro on Thursday night, at 15th overall, gives the Saints greater depth in the backfield of a defense that ranked last in the NFL last season, giving up a single-season record 7,042 yards.
He will compete for playing time behind starting safeties Roman Harper and Malcolm Jenkins.
Vaccaro made 92 tackles and two interceptions last season, when he was credited with seven passes defended.
In 2011, he was widely believed to be a candidate to leave Texas early after being named first-team All-Big 12. That season, he had 67 tackles, including 6 1/2 for losses, two interceptions, and was credited with seven pass breakups.