MINNEAPOLIS -- The Saints draft class is going to go down as a great one, and it showed in the awards department on Saturday at , as Marshon Lattimore was named the 2017 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, giving the Saints a sweep of the rookie awards.
Lattimore was the Saints' first-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, and he helped a typically abysmal secondary surge to a surprisingly dominant season, serving as a lockdown corner on the outside for New Orleans.
Alvin Kamara, the team's third-round pick, earlier in the evening.
Lattimore finished the year with five interceptions, 18 passes defensed, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and 52 total tackles. According to Pro Football Focus, Lattimore had a 45.3 passer rating against when thrown at by opposing quarterbacks.
He and Ken Crawley were arguably the biggest surprise in the NFL this season; the Saints have been horrible at stopping passing attacks for years and suddenly flipped the switch. They were lit up the first two weeks of the season -- the Vikings and Sam Bradford gashed them and then Tom Brady and the Patriots came to town.
But down the stretch, New Orleans was dominant on defense and it made a massive difference for the team, helping them to win the NFC South.
With Kamara, Lattimore, offensive tackle Ryan Ramcyzk and safety Marcus Williams, the Saints can puff their chests about the 2017 NFL Draft class and are likely set up for a sustained run of success during the final years of Brees's career.