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New Orleans Saints

-- Saints Activate Three --
Tue Jul 29, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have activated WR Robert Meachem (back), OT Tavon Rooks (back), and FS Jairus Byrd (back) from the active PUP list.

-- Saints Monday Injury Update - Stills & Meachem Sit --
Mon Jul 28, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints OG Ben Grubbs (undisclosed injury) and WR Robert Meachem (back) remained sidelined Monday. HC Sean Payton said both should be back within a day or so but declined to offer any specifics on the injuries. S Jairus Byrd, DT John Jenkins, WR Kenny Stills and OT Tavon Rooks also remained sidelined.

-- Mark Ingram Working as a Starter --
Sun Jul 27, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports Saints RB Mark Ingram worked primarily with the first team on Saturday, while RB Pierre Thomas spent time with the reserves. Although it's far too early to draw firm conclusions, HC Sean Payton did refer to Ingram as "one of our starters" when answering a question about him Saturday. "He's a guy that we felt played very well in the last half of the season," Payton said. "It's a position where we obviously carry depth, because it's a position that gets nicked up in our game. (Ingram) is smart. He's tough. He runs with good pad level. So far, he's doing well."

-- Kenny Stills Sits Saturday --
Sat Jul 26, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports Saints WR Kenny Stills (quad) is not practicing on Saturday. He left yesterday's session with a quad injury.

-- Kenny Stills Pulls Up Lame --
Fri Jul 25, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Advocate reports Saints WR Kenny Stills pulled up on deep route and clutched at the back of one of his legs in practice this morning. He is leaving the field with a trainer.

-- Jimmy Graham in Fantastic Shape --
Fri Jul 25, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports New Orleans Saints HC Sean Payton said TE Jimmy Graham had the “low time” in the team’s pre-camp conditioning test. “That was significant. I told him to stay in Miami every offseason,” Payton said, via ESPN.com. “I mean, it was outstanding.”

-- Joe Morgan a Go for Training Camp --
Thu Jul 24, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Advocate reports Saints HC Sean Payton said WR Joe Morgan (torn ACL) is "a go" for training camp.

-- Saints Make Player Moves --
Tue Jul 22, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the New Orleans Saints have added two undrafted rookies who had previous short stints with other NFL clubs, signing LB Marcus Thompson (ex-Dolphins) and NT Tyrone Ezell. The team also waived/injured LB Cheta Ozougwu and undrafted rookie NT Moses McCray.

-- Saints List One --
Mon Jul 21, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have placed NT John Jenkins (pectoral) on the active PUP list.

-- Jairus Byrd Rehab Update --
Mon Jul 21, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints S Jairus Byrd's (back surgery) recovery from back surgery has gone as expected, according to a league source. It's unknown if he'll be limited to start training camp.

-- Jimmy Graham Trained Hard While Away from Saints --
Thu Jul 17, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The New Orleans Saints official website reports while TE Jimmy Graham’s contract negotiations played out, he remained in Miami to train as the Saints held their offseason program in Metairie. He treated his offseason regimen exactly as he did in 2011 when the league was in a lockout and players could not practice or train at their respective teams’ facilities. “It was tough being away from the guys,” said Graham. “The good thing is that the base and group of friends I have here in Miami is still strong. I did the same thing I did during the lockout year. I basically did the same day-to-day routine that I did (in 2011). And after the lockout, I had one of my best seasons I have ever had.”

-- Darren Sharper Court Update --
Wed Jul 16, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the case against former NFL S Darren Sharper is scheduled to move forward in a California court on Wednesday. Sharper is charged with drugging and raping two women in Los Angeles last October and the Associated Press reports that there will be a hearing on Wednesday to determine if there is sufficient evidence for Sharper to stand trial. Sharper was originally held on $1 million bail, but a judge ruled that he should be held without bail after he was indicted on similar charges from November in Arizona. Wednesday’s court schedule is also expected to include a hearing on whether Sharper should be extradited to Arizona to face the charges in that state before any trial in California. Authorities in Louisiana, Florida and Nevada have also investigated Sharper for alleged sexual assaults, but he has not been charged in any case. Sharper pleaded not guilty to the charges in California and has denied the other allegations as well.

-- Saints Finally Re-Sign Jimmy Graham; Make Him Highest Paid TE --
Tue Jul 15, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the New Orleans Saints and Pro Bowl TE Jimmy Graham have agreed to a four-year, $40 million deal that includes $21 million guaranteed, a source familiar with the deal said. The deal makes Graham the highest-paid tight end in NFL history, eclipsing the deal signed in 2008 by former Indianapolis Colt TE Dallas Clark, who got $27.55 million in the first three years of that deal. Graham and the Saints both announced the agreement, minus terms, via Twitter on Tuesday morning. NBC Sports adds a source with knowledge of the contract says Graham received $12 million to sign, along with a $1 million base salary for 2014. That’s $13 million in the first year (math!) and a cap number of $4 million. The rest of the guaranteed money falls into 2015 salary, which is guaranteed for injury only, for now. The $8 million Graham is due to make next year becomes fully guaranteed on the third day of the 2015 waiver period. This means that, as a practical matter, the Saints won’t be cutting Graham before the injury guarantee becomes a full and complete guarantee. Cutting Graham in the days after the next Super Bowl, more than a month before the start of the new league year, would result in $9 million in cap dollars flowing back to 2014. Which presumably would force the Saints to engage in some contract restructurings on an emergency basis.

-- Saints Finally Re-Sign Jimmy Graham; Make Him Highest Paid TE --
Tue Jul 15, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the New Orleans Saints and Pro Bowl TE Jimmy Graham have agreed to a four-year, $40 million deal that includes $21 million guaranteed, a source familiar with the deal said. The deal makes Graham the highest-paid tight end in NFL history, eclipsing the deal signed in 2008 by former Indianapolis Colt TE Dallas Clark, who got $27.55 million in the first three years of that deal. Graham and the Saints both announced the agreement, minus terms, via Twitter on Tuesday morning. NBC Sports adds a source with knowledge of the contract says Graham received $12 million to sign, along with a $1 million base salary for 2014. That’s $13 million in the first year (math!) and a cap number of $4 million. The rest of the guaranteed money falls into 2015 salary, which is guaranteed for injury only, for now. The $8 million Graham is due to make next year becomes fully guaranteed on the third day of the 2015 waiver period. This means that, as a practical matter, the Saints won’t be cutting Graham before the injury guarantee becomes a full and complete guarantee. Cutting Graham in the days after the next Super Bowl, more than a month before the start of the new league year, would result in $9 million in cap dollars flowing back to 2014. Which presumably would force the Saints to engage in some contract restructurings on an emergency basis.

-- Saints Close to Signing Jimmy Graham --
Mon Jul 14, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the New Orleans Saints and TE Jimmy Graham are closing in on a new long-term deal to make him the highest-paid tight end in NFL history. There is now optimism a deal will be done by the Tuesday deadline.

-- Source: Jimmy Graham Appeals Arbitrator's Ruling --
Mon Jul 14, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham has officially appealed an arbitrator's ruling that stated he’ll be paid as a franchise-tagged tight end not as a wide receiver, a source said.

-- Jimmy Graham Deadline Set for Tuesday --
Mon Jul 14, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports by 4:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, the New Orleans Saints must file and the NFL must approve a long-term deal with TE Jimmy Graham. If they don’t, Graham will be able to sign only a one-year contract in 2014. Amid Twitter sightings of both Graham and HC Sean Payton in New Orleans, the fact remains that, regardless of where the principals are located, the time has come to put signatures on a multi-year contract. Technically, failure to agree to a long-term deal by the close of business on Tuesday would prevent the Saints from signing Graham to a multi-year contract until after the conclusion of the 2014 regular season. As a practical matter, it would push everything back by a year, with the Saints having to decide whether to apply the tag for a second straight year to Graham. If they do, then next July 15th becomes the deadline for signing him to a long-term deal. It’s unclear whether they’ll actually get something done.

-- Benjamin Watson: Jimmy Graham Learning Valuable Lesson --
Sat Jul 12, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports New Orleans Saints TE Benjamin Watson, who is atop the depth chart as long as TE Jimmy Graham remains unsigned, says Graham has learned a valuable lesson this offseason: Even if your team appreciates the work you do, they’ll fight as hard as they can to pay you as little as they can. Asked about Saints HC Sean Payton testifying against Graham at an arbitration hearing, Watson said that’s just the way management handles contract negotiations. “Welcome to the business side of football,” Watson told ESPN. “And a lot of times we don’t see this part because rarely does a situation make it all the way to arbitration. But that’s the business side of football. And it’s kind of no different than a contract situation where there’s a heated discussion over contracts, things are said back and forth. And in the end both sides are able to amicably move on and back to the business of football once there’s an agreement in place. But I’m with you. I was thinking much the same thing when I heard that Coach Payton was having to testify, and I don’t know if he was testifying on his own accord or was being forced to, and I also don’t know what conversations he’s had with Jimmy since then and where their relationship stands. But I do know that if and when Jimmy makes it back, and hopefully sooner than later, things will be smoothed over and we’ll get to trying to play Saints football and winning championships.”

-- Jimmy Graham Watch --
Fri Jul 11, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the New Orleans Saints and TE Jimmy Graham must reach a long-term deal by Tuesday, July 15. If they don’t, the Saints and Graham can thereafter sign only a one-year deal. According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the discussions have to date gone slowly. Which means there’s a chance the discussions will go down to the wire. This means that Graham’s window for appealing the decision that he’s a tight end and not a receiver for franchise tag purposes will close before a deal is, or isn’t, done. The CBA states that Graham “must serve on the other party and file with the System Arbitrator a notice of appeal within ten (10) days of the date of the award appealed from.” The arbitrator issued his ruling on July 2. That makes Saturday, July 12, the deadline. This means that Graham may have to file his appeal as soon as today, in order to ensure that he doesn’t technically fail to file “within” 10 days of the decision.

-- Sources: Saints to Negotiate with Jimmy Graham This Week --
Mon Jul 7, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Ed Werder reports sources expect the New Orleans Saints will resume negotiations on a multi-year deal with TE Jimmy Graham this week. The deadline for a franchise player to sign a long-term deal is July 15th.

-- Saints Not Happy About How the Jimmy Graham Ruling was Determined --
Sun Jul 6, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the New Orleans Saints like the decision from arbitrator Stephen Burbank that TE Jimmy Graham is a tight end for franchise-tag purposes. But the Saints aren’t thrilled with the way Burbank reached his conclusion. According to a source with knowledge of the team’s position, the Saints disagree with the notion that the question of tight end vs. receiver boils down to whether the player lines up most of the time within four yards of an offensive tackle. As the Saints see it, a tight end is a tight end no matter where he lines up or how often he lines up there.

-- Source: Saints Won't Pull or Reduce High Offer to Jimmy Graham --
Fri Jul 4, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports contrary to reports, suggestions, and/or speculation that Wednesday’s ruling from arbitrator Stephen Burbank re-set the negotiations on a long-term deal between the Saints and TE Jimmy Graham to square one, a source with knowledge of the discussions says that the Saints have not reduced or yanked their offer. The Saints haven’t, and won’t, use the ruling that Graham is a tight end for franchise tag purposes to alter a proposal that would make Graham the highest-paid tight end in NFL history, with a package worth $9.5 million per year. The Saints likewise have no animosity or frustration to Graham for attempting to advance an interpretation of the labor deal that would have entitled him to a franchise tender of $12.3 million. The team understands that those efforts are part of the business of the sport, and the team believes that Graham’s camp realizes the same thing regarding the team’s efforts to keep the franchise tender at $7 million. And the team remains very confident that a long-term deal will be reached by the July 15 deadline. At $9.5 million per year with a considerable chunk of fully guaranteed money up front, Graham will have a hard time rejecting the offer and taking a year-to-year approach that would pay $7 million in 2014, $8.4 million in 2015, and quarterback money of $16 million or so in 2016. That’s $30 million over three years, but with Graham carrying the injury risk each and every season. If the Saints fully guarantee an amount equal or greater to the first two years ($15.4 million) and offer a total package in the range of $30 million over the first three years, it’s a no-brainer that Graham will take the offer.

-- Jabari Greer Watch --
Thu Jul 3, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports free-agent CB Jabari Greer (knee) said his rehab from last year’s major knee injury is “going really well.” But the former New Orleans Saints cornerback said he’s not actively pursuing any opportunities to return to the NFL right now and acknowledges that it’s probably unlikely that he’ll be able to work out for any teams in time for training camp. “I think my pride and my body have two different things to say about that,” joked Greer, who was released by the Saints in February. “But we’ll see. I mean, God can do anything, man.”

-- Jimmy Graham Contract Watch --
Thu Jul 3, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports agent Jimmy Sexton and New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis will be starting at "ground zero" in negotiations for a new deal for TE Jimmy Graham. Both sides were waiting for Wednesday's ruling as a benchmark for talks. Graham now has 10 days to appeal, which looms as a potential complication. There is a very real possibility that Graham will balk at signing his tender if there is no agreement by the deadline. Arbitrator Stephen Burbank suggested as much in his ruling, stating that Graham's "consideration of whether to accept the Franchise Player tender is affected by whether the tender is for a one-year contract of $7 million, or $12 million." In a worst-case scenario for the Saints, Graham could travel the route paved by OG Logan Mankins in 2010 when the Patriots guard skipped training camp, failed to report for the start of the regular season and only rejoined the team in early November, thereby accruing a season toward free agency. On the positive side, though, the Saints have been "100 percent prepared" for this scenario and still anticipate an agreement with Graham "right before" the July 15 deadline. The tight-end ruling will provide clarity in negotiations, setting Graham's value below the top-tier wide-receiver market. If Graham is due to collect $15-16 million under the franchise tag for the next two years, the Saints might be able to appease him by offering more than $20 million up front.

-- Six Teams Ready to Make a Run at Jimmy Graham --
Wed Jul 2, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

Bleacher Report reports there are a good half dozen teams preparing to make runs at TE Jimmy Graham should talks between him and the New Orleans Saints falter.

-- NFLPA Make Statement on Jimmy Graham Grievance Ruling --
Wed Jul 2, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the union representing TE Jimmy Graham in the process has responded to today's grievance ruling. “The NFLPA will review with Jimmy Graham the decision from Arbitrator Stephen Burbank which permits the player to be designated as a tight end for Franchise Tag purposes,” the union said in a press release. “We will advise Graham of his options and carefully determine next steps in this matter.” On the surface, his options are simple. He can appeal the ruling to a three-person panel, or he can drop it. Under the normal procedure spelled out in the labor deal, however, Graham’s appeal wouldn’t be resolved by July 15, the deadline for doing a long-term contract with the Saints. So if he hopes to push the pendulum decisively in his direction before the last day for using that as leverage on a long-term contract, he needs to request an expedited appeal, with a ruling coming in the next 13 days at the latest. Here’s the catch. Graham deliberately waited from the application of the tag in late February until the middle of April to file the grievance. Thus, the three-person panel could response to a request for a speedy appeal by saying, “You should have filed your grievance earlier.” Either way, the Saints and Graham have until July 15 to work out a long-term deal.

-- Ruling: Jimmy Graham a TE for Franchise Designation --
Wed Jul 2, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports arbitrator Stephen Burbank has ruled that New Orleans Saints franchised TE Jimmy Graham is a tight end for franchise designation purposes.

-- Ruling: Jimmy Graham a TE for Franchise Designation --
Wed Jul 2, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports arbitrator Stephen Burbank has ruled that New Orleans Saints franchised TE Jimmy Graham is a tight end for franchise designation purposes.

-- Jimmy Graham Decision Coming July 3rd --
Mon Jun 30, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports arbitrator Stephen Burbank expects to inform the sides of his ruling regarding franchise New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham’s grievance on July 3rd, “no sooner, no later.”

-- Drew Brees Says He Knows How Arbitrtor Will Rule in Graham Case, But... --
Sun Jun 29, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees said he's spoken with arbitrator Stephen Burbank about whether Graham will be ruled a tight end or a receiver. "He kind of let me know what his ruling is going to be," Brees said jokingly in the interview. "But he swore me to secrecy, so I can't really say at this point."

-- Jimmy Graham Grievance Hearing Details Leak --
Sat Jun 28, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports as the ruling on New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham's grievance approaches, more information is trickling out regarding last week’s arbitration hearing on the question of whether Graham is a tight end or a receiver for purposes of the franchise tag. According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the cases on behalf of the NFL and NFLPA were bolstered by expert testimony from former NFL GM Bill Polian and former NFL HC Butch Davis, respectively. Polian was an expert witness as to the position that Graham is a tight end for tag purposes; Davis testified on behalf of the position that Graham should be regarded as a receiver. Other witnesses included, from the team’s perspective, GM Mickey Loomis and HC Sean Payton. Testifying on Graham’s behalf were Graham and former Saints (current Steelers) WR Lance Moore.

-- Source: Jimmy Graham Grievance Decision Coming Next Week --
Fri Jun 27, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports it’s been more than a week since an arbitrator considered arguments and evidence in the franchise-tag grievance between TE Jimmy Graham and the New Orleans Saints. To date, no ruling has been issued. According to a source with knowledge of the situation, a ruling is expected next week. That won’t be the end of it. The losing party party inevitably will appeal the outcome to a three-person panel under the labor deal. And a decision may or may not be issued before the July 15 deadline for working out a long-term deal. Which means that there’s a decent chance the decision won’t be official before the team and the player have to decide whether to work out a long-term contract or let it ride on a one-year deal with franchise tender to be determined by the appeals panel.

-- July 15th Looming for Saints & Jimmy Graham --
Tue Jun 24, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports as the system arbitrator ponders the evidence and prepares to issue a ruling on the question of whether New Orleans Saints franchised TE Jimmy Graham should be regarded as a tight end or a receiver for franchise tag purposes, a key date looms on the calendar. If the Saints and Graham don’t work out a long-term deal by July 15, Graham may sign only a one-year contract. The only problem? Nothing in the Collective Bargaining Agreement mandates a final ruling by July 15. Article 15 of the CBA doesn’t impose a specific timetable for the issuance of a decision by the system arbitrator. In theory, the system arbitrator can drag his feet until after the deadline passes. After a decision is rendered, it won’t be final until the losing party exercises its right to an appeal before a three-person panel. The portion of Article 15 that addresses the appeals process establishes various dates and deadlines for exercising appeal rights and filing briefs and conducting oral argument, but it also allows either side to request an expedited schedule upon a showing of good cause. It’s unclear whether either side has sought an expedited ruling from the system arbitrator, or whether the arbitrator or the appeals panel would react favorably to such a request from Graham, who didn’t move immediately to file a grievance when the tight end version of the franchise tag was applied to him in February. If he had, the process surely would have finished by now. Maybe that’s the way Graham wanted it. The absence of a ruling before July 15 could be the best way to nudge the two sides toward resolving the dispute via a long-term contract.

-- Saints Make Player Moves --
Mon Jun 23, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the New Orleans Saints have signed rookie LB Todd Davis and waived injured CB A.J. Davis.

-- NFL Pushing for a Jimmy Graham Grievance Settlement? --
Sun Jun 22, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports while the New Orleans Saints have arguments about which it feels very strongly, losing the TE Jimmy Graham grievance would be far less surprising than losing the previous QB Drew Brees grievance. If they do, it will cost $12.3 million to keep Graham for 2014, $14.76 million for 2015, and $21.25 million for 2016. That’s $48.31 million over three years on a year-to-year approach, if Graham chooses to take the OT Walter Jones approach and assume the injury risk for as long as the Saints are willing to continue using the tag. If the Saints don’t want to pay a guy they regard as a tight end $14.76 million in 2015 or $21.25 million in 2016, then he’ll hit the open market and go to the highest bidder. For all those reasons and plenty of others (including the sending of a message to young players that they’ll be rewarded for their efforts without a protracted fight and/or protracted delays), the Saints would be wise to find a way to work this out with a compromise. If Graham wins his grievance, they’ll wish they had.

-- Jimmy Graham Has Grievance Hearing Today --
Tue Jun 17, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports today is New Orleans Saints franchised TE Jimmy Graham’s system arbitration, barring a compromise. He will he be tagged as a wide receiver ($12 million) or tight end ($7 million) after the grievance hearing. A settlement in the TE Jimmy Graham system arbitration is unlikely.

-- Marques Colston Over His Foot Issues --
Wed Jun 11, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Advocate reports New Orleans Saints WR Marques Colston says, unlike last year, he has no foot issues. "Feels completely different ... no restrictions," Colston said about his foot.

-- John Jenkins Undergoes Minor Surgery --
Tue Jun 10, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports New Orleans Saints DT John Jenkins has missed offseason workouts after undergoing a minor pectoral surgery, a source says. He will be ready for training camp or sooner.

-- Pierre Thomas to Replace Darren Sproles... a Lot --
Mon Jun 9, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas will get a lot of snaps in the packages where we used to see RB Darren Sproles because he's such a good receiver out of the backfield and such a reliable pass protector.

-- Saints TE Game Plan --
Fri Jun 6, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports Saints TE Benjamin Watson lined up just to the outside of the left tackle on one play. TE Josh Hill was split wide on another. Both followed their assignments during a recent New Orleans Saints offseason practice. Saints coaches insist they have asked the tight ends to do everything TE Jimmy Graham would have if he and the team were not in the middle of a contract dispute that has caused him to stay away from practices. "Some other guys are getting reps, but as far as what we are installing and what we are doing, it's not changing," Saints OC Pete Carmichael said.

-- Joe Morgan Rehab Update --
Thu Jun 5, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints WR Joe Morgan (torn ACL) is on track to return for the start of training camp.

-- Jimmy Graham No-Shows OTAs --
Thu Jun 5, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times Picayune reports unsigned franchised free-agent TE Jimmy Graham continues to skip New Orleans Saints OTAs.

-- Saints Sign Brandon Deadrick --
Tue Jun 3, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports the New Orleans Saints have signed free-agent DL Brandon Deadrick to a one-year contract.

-- Saints Work Out Brandon Deaderick --
Tue Jun 3, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have worked out free-agent DT Brandon Deaderick.

-- Saints Sign Jonathan Goodwin --
Mon Jun 2, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports the New Orleans Saints have signed free-agent C Jonathan Goodwin.

-- Jimmy Graham Contract Watch --
Sat May 31, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports there appears to be very little chance that franchised TE Jimmy Graham’s contract issue will drag into training camp. The deadline for franchise-tagged players to sign long-term deals is July 15. After that date, they can only sign one-year deals. It would be shocking if Graham doesn’t sign a long-term deal with the New Orleans Saints by then, no matter what happens with his upcoming grievance hearing to decide whether he should be considered a tight end or receiver. Normally, the prediction would be that Graham would sign his deal around July 14th. However, that grievance hearing (scheduled for June 17-18) makes it much tougher to predict how things will play out. For one thing, it could entice both sides to reach a long-term agreement sooner – if they decide they don’t want to put too much leverage into the hands of a third-party arbitrator. Both sides might feel good about their arguments, but there’s no way either side can confidently predict how the arbitrator will rule. If they do play this thing out, it could significantly influence the size of Graham’s deal. If Graham is declared a tight end, which comes with a salary of $7.035 million this year, the Saints will have a strong case for keeping his annual salary at $10 million or below. If Graham is declared a receiver, which comes with a salary of $12.3 million this year, then his camp will have a strong case to demand $12 million or more per year. It would make sense for them to agree to a deal worth between $10.5 million and $11 million per year before the arbitrator makes his decision. But don't be surprised if Graham’s camp decides it’s worth the gamble to play this thing out.

-- Rob Ryan: Champ Bailey Looks Fantastic --
Fri May 30, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports New Orleans Saints DC Rob Ryan likes what he sees on new Saint CB Champ Bailey. “He looks fantastic,” Ryan told the Advertiser. “You look out there and you think he’s one of those young guys running around. But he’s bringing excitement to our defense and knowledge and it’s awesome to add a great player like him.” The soon-to-be 36-year-old Bailey is the oldest player on the Saints other than PK Shayne Graham, and he says he takes the role of being a leader seriously. “If you put me on any team, I’m always going to be the old guy,” Bailey said. “It’s just something I’ve got to get used to. . . . My first thing is to lead by example, show how hard I can work and try to lead that way. And all these guys — I know I have a lot of experience and I’m not going to shy away from telling them things I think they need to hear and making sure I’m there for them when they have questions.”

-- Jairus Byrd Undergoes Back Surgery; Will be Ready for Training Camp --
Fri May 30, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The New Orleans Saints official website reports New Orleans Saints HC Sean Payton announced Thursday that S Jairus Byrd has had surgery on his back and will return to the team in a week. Payton, speaking after the team's first OTA that was open to the media, said the surgery "didn't need to be done" but that Byrd and the team both thought it best to get it cleared up now. Payton said if Byrd was having the same issue during the season he would have just received treatment rather than having surgery. "He'll start up with training camp with no problem," Payton said.

-- Jairus Byrd Undergoes Back Surgery --
Thu May 29, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports New Orleans Saints S Jairus Byrd was a notable absence from the third day of organized team activities. Byrd, who had back surgery Thursday, and was not at practice, the first all-team session open to the media this offseason. Saints HC Sean Payton said he expected him to be back by training camp. "He's having a surgical procedure on his back for a disk," Payton said. "It's been asymptomatic but it's something we wanted to do, and he as well, to alleviate any issues coming in the fall. He'll be back here in a week. For this next week, he won't be at these OTAs, he'll be going through his rehab." Payton said the procedure was optional, and would not have been done if they were in the middle of the season. "We felt like it would be something that would prevent any issues in the fall," Payton said.

-- Jimmy Graham No-Shows OTAs --
Thu May 29, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times Picayune reports unsigned franchised free-agent TE Jimmy Graham is skipping New Orleans Saints OTAs.

-- Drew Brees Wants to Play Well into His 40's --
Thu May 22, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

AP reports New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees has been joking about retirement lately on national television. For now, it's just part of a fictional advertising campaign for an open-air, three-wheel vehicle which Brees' football contract forbids him from riding. The truth is, even as Brees enters his 14th NFL season at the age of 35, he plans to play well beyond the three seasons left on his current deal with New Orleans. "I joke about retirement, but I'm not naive," Brees said this week while doing promotional work for the Can-Am Spyder. "I've played 13 years and it's gone by so fast. Each and every year, it's just like, 'Wow, I made it through another year.' Coming off three straight seasons with 5,000-plus yards passing, there's no sign of decline yet. "Do I hope I can play into my 40s? Yes, I do. As long as I'm healthy and playing at a high level, then why not?" Brees added. "I certainly don't take it for granted and know that obviously you've got to prove yourself every year."

-- Saints Sign 4th-Rounder Khairi Fortt --
Mon May 19, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have signed 4th-round draft pick LB Khairi Fortt to a four-year contract.

-- Saints Make Player Moves --
Mon May 19, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the New Orleans Saints have signed WR Steve Hull, RB Derrick Strozier and OL Thomas Welch. They also waived/non-football illness NT Brandon McCray and waived OG Micajah Reynolds.

-- Saints Sign One --
Sun May 18, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have signed free-agent DE Cheta Ozougwu.

-- Saints Sign First-Rounder Brandin Cooks --
Sun May 18, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

RavenInsider reports the New Orleans Saints have signed first-round draft pick WR Brandin Cooks to a four-year contract.

-- Saints Sign 2nd-Rounder Stanley Jean-Baptiste --
Sat May 17, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have signed second-round draft pick CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste to a four-year contract.

-- Saints Sign Three Rookies --
Fri May 16, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have signed drafted rookies LB Ronald Powell, S Vinnie Sunseri, and OT Tavon Rooks to four-year contracts.

-- Saints Sign 17 --
Mon May 12, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the New Orleans Saints have signed UDFAs QB Logan Kilgore, WR Brandon Coleman, OL Matthew Armstrong, DB Brian Dixon, LB Kasim Edebali, RB Tim Flanders, LB Spencer Hadley, TE Je’Ron Hamm, TE Nic Jacobs, WR Seantavius Jones, DL Brandon McCray, OL Micajah Reynolds, DL George Uko, LB Chidera Uzo-Diribe, DL Lawrence Virgil, S Pierre Warren and S Ty Zimmerman.

-- Jimmy Graham's Grievance Date Set --
Mon May 12, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the grievance hearing for New Orleans Saints franchised TE Jimmy Graham is scheduled for June 17-18.

-- NFLPA Files Grievance on Behalf of Jimmy Graham --
Wed May 7, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

USA Today reports the NFL Players Association has filed a grievance on TE Jimmy Graham's behalf, arguing the franchise tag the New Orleans Saints placed on him in February should pay him like a wide receiver, not a tight end, a person close to Graham said on Wednesday. The grievance was filed after months of talks about a long-term extension failed to yield a deal, according to the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak publicly on the matter. The difference between the franchise tender amounts is nearly $5.3 million, with the tight end tag worth $7.035 million, the amount of the tender Graham has not signed, and the receiver tag worth $12.312 million. If the sides can't reach a settlement or otherwise resolve their differences, Graham's case would be heard by a third-party arbitrator, and the decision surely would affect leverage in negotiations on a long-term deal. No hearing date has been set, the person said. Article 10, Section 2(a)(i) of the collective bargaining agreement states: "The Nonexclusive Franchise Tender shall be a one year NFL Player Contract for (A) the average of the five largest Prior Year Salaries for players at the position (within the categories set forth in Section 7(a) below) at which the Franchise Player participated in the most plays during the prior League Year …" The grievance argues Graham, 27, participated in more snaps last season as a receiver than a tight end. The Saints are expected to counter the tight end position in their offense is heavily "flexed" and thus Graham remains a tight end even though he often detaches from the formation. Graham wasn't on-hand when the Saints began their voluntary offseason workout program last month.

-- NFLPA Files Grievance on Behalf of Jimmy Graham --
Wed May 7, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

USA Today reports the NFL Players Association has filed a grievance on TE Jimmy Graham's behalf, arguing the franchise tag the New Orleans Saints placed on him in February should pay him like a wide receiver, not a tight end, a person close to Graham said on Wednesday. The grievance was filed after months of talks about a long-term extension failed to yield a deal, according to the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak publicly on the matter. The difference between the franchise tender amounts is nearly $5.3 million, with the tight end tag worth $7.035 million, the amount of the tender Graham has not signed, and the receiver tag worth $12.312 million. If the sides can't reach a settlement or otherwise resolve their differences, Graham's case would be heard by a third-party arbitrator, and the decision surely would affect leverage in negotiations on a long-term deal. No hearing date has been set, the person said. Article 10, Section 2(a)(i) of the collective bargaining agreement states: "The Nonexclusive Franchise Tender shall be a one year NFL Player Contract for (A) the average of the five largest Prior Year Salaries for players at the position (within the categories set forth in Section 7(a) below) at which the Franchise Player participated in the most plays during the prior League Year …" The grievance argues Graham, 27, participated in more snaps last season as a receiver than a tight end. The Saints are expected to counter the tight end position in their offense is heavily "flexed" and thus Graham remains a tight end even though he often detaches from the formation. Graham wasn't on-hand when the Saints began their voluntary offseason workout program last month.

-- Lance Moore Catches Flack from Saints Fans --
Wed Apr 30, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports after eight seasons catching passes from QB Drew Brees in New Orleans, WR Lance Moore went to Pittsburgh this offseason, where he has begun work with QB Ben Roethlisberger. Moore was recently asked to compare the two quarterbacks, and Saints fans weren’t all happy with what he said. “I would say that Ben has a little bit stronger of an arm, maybe a lot stronger arm,” Moore told ESPN. “Just from the last couple of days with him here, that’s something that kind of jumps out at me. If you are kind of lazy with your eyes the ball will zoom right past you. That’s something that I will have to adjust to. I feel like the quarterback should never really have to adjust to the receiver.” Saints fans who saw those comments went after Moore on Twitter, prompting Moore to respond. “Everybody down south is mad now? Never said I disliked Drew or am not thankful for my time with him. Wouldn’t be where I am w/o him. Chill out,” Moore told Saints fans on Twitter. Although Moore’s comment about Roethlisberger having a stronger arm than Brees got most of the attention, Moore had high praise for both quarterbacks. “I definitely count my blessings every day to be able to play with somebody like a Brees or a Roethlisberger,” Moore said. “Honestly, leaving New Orleans was kind of scary for me because I had that comfort in a quarterback that had broken so many records and obviously won a Super Bowl. To get somewhere like the Pittsburgh Steelers that has a quarterback that has won a couple of Super Bowls, it is definitely something that I am thankful for.”

-- Saints Won't Pick Up 5th-Year Option on Mark Ingram --
Mon Apr 28, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

CBS Sports reports the New Orleans Saints do not intend to pick up the 5th-year option on RB Mark Ingram for 2015.

-- Mark Ingram Watch --
Fri Apr 25, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports New Orleans Saints RB Mark Ingram was unsure Tuesday if the team would pick up his fifth-year option as his contract is set to expire after the 2014 season. Saints HC Sean Payton didn't make the team's intentions any clearer Wednesday. Payton, speaking before his round at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans's Pro-Am, said no decision has been made on Ingram's future. The Saints have until May 3 to exercise the option for Ingram, which would cost reportedly $5.2 million in base salary in 2015. "We've got time to do all of that. So there's nothing we've decided permanently with that," Payton said.

-- Brees Believes Graham Gets New Deal Soon --
Wed Apr 23, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports Saints QB Drew Brees said he's very confident a new deal for franchised TE Jimmy Graham will happen soon.

-- Saints Pick Up 5th-Year Option on Cameron Jordan --
Mon Apr 21, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have picked up the 5th-year option on DE Cameron Jordan for 2015.

-- Saints Re-Sign Robert Meachem --
Fri Apr 18, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The New Orleans Saints official website reports the Saints have re-signed free-agent WR Robert Meachem to a one-year contract.

-- Saints Work Out Rusty Smith --
Thu Apr 17, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL Insider Howard Balzer reports free-agent QB Rusty Smith recently worked out for the New Orleans Saints.

-- Saints Hosting Jonathan Goodwin --
Wed Apr 16, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints are hosting veteran free-agent C Jonathan Goodwin today.

-- Not Much Movement in Jimmy Graham Contract Talks --
Thu Apr 10, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis shot down the notion Wednesday that the Saints and franchised TE Jimmy Graham will aim to strike a new deal by the middle of this month. NBC Sports last month cited a source as saying the two sides would try to reach a long-term contract agreement before the April 22 deadline for Graham to file a grievance over his franchise-tag designation. Graham was officially designated as a tight end, though it’s expected that Graham and agent Jimmy Sexton will file the grievance to argue that he should be considered a wide receiver based on where he lined up most often last season. “Look, I’m always optimistic. But there’s no deadline here,” Loomis said when asked if that April 22 date was being used as a target. Loomis, who spoke to the media while attending LSU’s pro day, declined to give any specific updates on how talks are developing with Graham. But he seemed to indicate that the pace hasn’t picked up much since the Saints first placed the franchise tag on Graham more than a month ago. When asked for the most rational way for fans to look at the situation, Loomis cracked, “Well, when does training camp begin?”

-- Brodrick Bunkley Accepts Pay Cut --
Wed Apr 9, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reports Saints DT Brodrick Bunkley restructured his contract to create $2.85 million in salary cap space and accepted a pay cut. His salary this year went from $4.5 million to $1.65 million, including a $300,000 roster bonus. His base salaries in 2015 and 2016 stayed the same.

-- Rafael Bush Remains a Saint --
Mon Apr 7, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports S Rafael Bush said the New Orleans Saints matched the two-year offer sheet the Atlanta Falcons gave him. As a result, he remains a Saint.

-- Rafael Bush Hopes Saints Don't Match Offer from Falcons --
Fri Apr 4, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Advocate reports S Rafael Bush says he has enjoyed his two seasons with the Saints, and he especially liked playing under DC Rob Ryan in 2013. But after he hit restricted free agency this offseason, the Atlanta Falcons offered him a two-year deal worth up to $4.5 million to play for them instead, a league source said Friday. Bush signed the offer sheet. The Saints can keep him if they match the Falcons’ offer sheet by Tuesday. But Bush would prefer it if New Orleans let him move on, the source said. It’s nothing personal against the Saints, who in March extended Bush a one-year, $1.4 million tender that ensured they would have the chance to match any offer sheet the safety signed, the source said. According to the source, in Atlanta, Bush is being offered a chance to be a starting safety alongside S William Moore, a friend. The Falcons’ release in February of S Thomas DeCoud, a starter since 2009, created the opportunity.

-- Saints Sign Champ Bailey --
Fri Apr 4, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have signed free-agent CB Champ Bailey to a two-year contract with a maximum value of $7 million.

-- Saints Sign One --
Wed Apr 2, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have signed S Marcus Ball to a three-year contract.

-- Saints Re-Sign Parys Haralson --
Tue Apr 1, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have re-signed veteran free-agent LB Parys Haralson.

-- Saints Host Champ Bailey --
Tue Apr 1, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports free-agent CB Champ Bailey visited with the New Orleans Saints on Tuesday. ESPN's Adam Schefter adds Bailey plans to take at least another trip depending on host the talks go with the Saints.

-- Saints Plans for Center Still Unsettled --
Fri Mar 28, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints could still “very well” re-sign C Brian de la Puente or another veteran in free agency, coach Sean Payton said Wednesday at the NFL meetings in Orlando, Fla. Payton spoke highly of second-year OL Tim Lelito as a possible contender for the role, as well. And he said it appears to be a good draft class for interior linemen. But he said the Saints have not finalized their plans for the position yet. “It’s still unfolding, so it’d be premature to say, ‘Hey, here’s our plan today,’” Payton said. “We feel we’ve got some good young linemen in the building, and I’m sure that as we get back to New Orleans and we still continue to look at our boards, I wouldn’t be surprised if there possibly is a player signed. “But Tim Lelito would be a guy that’s gonna be in the mix, someone that will be competing for that opportunity. Well see who he’s gonna be competing against. But he’s someone that we feel has a chance to be that player. And yet we think there could be the potential to have someone (else). And it could very well be a guy like de la Puente or another guy who’s out there.” De la Puente visited with the Washington Redskins last week, and other teams have shown interest. The Saints remain in play as he mulls his options, according to league sources. That list of other veteran possibilities includes former Saints Pro Bowl C Jonathan Goodwin, who remains unsigned after three years with the San Francisco 49ers. Or the Saints could wind up drafting a potential center.

-- Saints Re-Sign Luke McCown --
Wed Mar 26, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have re-signed free-agent QB Luke McCown to a one-year contract.

-- Payton: Only a Matter of Time When Saints Re-sign Jimmy Graham --
Wed Mar 26, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints HC Sean Payton said Wednesday at the NFL owners meeting that it's a matter of time before the team reaches a long-term contract extension with Pro Bowl TE Jimmy Graham. The Saints used the one-year franchise tag with Graham on March 3. Both sides have been in continued negotiations, and Payton is confident a deal will be complete before the July deadline. "It's hard to put a timetable on it," Payton said Wednesday. "But I would say very similar to QB Drew Brees, I think all of us feel like it's just a matter of not if, but when. I don't know if there's nervous anticipation."

-- Jimmy Graham Plans to Lead the League in Penalties --
Tue Mar 25, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports the NFL has passed what surely will be known as the TE Jimmy Graham rule. And Graham plans to break it. Repeatedly. “I guess I’ll have to lead the NFL in penalties next year!” Graham said on Twitter after the NFL passed a rule banning the goal post dunk. Graham’s tweet was accompanied by an image of Graham dunking over an official. Obviously, the move isn’t banned; Graham can still dunk the ball after scoring. But Graham will be subject to a 15-yard penalty and fines that will increase as the violations mount. While many have accused the NFL of once again behaving as the “No Fun League,” the fact that Graham knocked a goal post cockeyed with a two-handed dunk last season likely prompted the league to eliminate the exception created when a prohibition on the use of props was passed several years ago.

-- Jimmy Graham Watch --
Mon Mar 24, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports a league source says the current expectation is that the New Orleans Saints and franchised TE Jimmy Graham will finalize a long-term contract before Graham pulls the pin on a grievance grenade. Once Graham files a grievance, the process will take on a life of its own, with more than $5 million turning on whether Graham lined up more as a receiver or a tight end for franchise tag purposes. At that point, Graham has nothing to lose by letting it ride, especially once the process becomes adversarial in an industry where the bright line of winning and losing looms over everything else.

-- Brees: Jimmy Graham is a Hybrid --
Sat Mar 22, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees weighed in again on whether TE Jimmy Graham is a tight end or a wide receiver, a topic that has become one of the New Orleans Saints' biggest offseason issues. But Brees did not fall on either side of the debate this time, taking a more diplomatic approach when evaluating Graham's position in a recent interview with the ESPN Radio's "The Dan Le Batard Show." "He's a hybrid," Brees said during the interview, which took place Thursday night. "I don't know if there's anybody like him or ever like him." Brees' statement differed from his remarks earlier this offseason. In an interview with NBC Sports Radio in January, Brees described Graham as a tight end on multiple occasions. The Saints placed their franchise tag on Graham earlier this month, tendering a $7.04 million offer to the two-time Pro Bowler. Barring a holdout, Graham will play the 2014 season under the distinction of tight end rather than wide receiver. The 6-foot-7, 260-pound Graham could still opt to file a grievance, asking to be designated instead as a wide receiver, which carries a $12.3 million franchise tag. Graham's camp is believed to be seeking a long-term contract that is more in line with the NFL's top receivers than the league's top tight ends. The Saints have remained adamant throughout the process that Graham is a tight end, but Brees doesn't necessarily see it that way. "He plays a different position than anybody in the league," Brees said during his interview with ESPN Radio. "So he'll be cutting edge with whatever he gets [paid]. And everybody will try to compare themselves to him five years from now." Graham and his agent, Jimmy Sexton, likely will file a grievance through the players' association, asking that Graham be considered a receiver because he lined up out wide or in the slot on 67 percent of his snaps last season.

-- Pierre Thomas New Contract Details --
Thu Mar 20, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas did take a pay cut in 2014 when he signed his new three-year deal with the Saints this month. The details are now available after that three-year, $6.9 million contract was officially processed. Thomas will now make $2.4 million in salary and bonuses this season instead of $2.9 million. But that $2.4 million is all guaranteed. The Saints saved $1.33 million off this year’s salary cap with Thomas’ new deal.

-- Keenan Lewis Restructures --
Thu Mar 20, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Times-Picayune reports New Orleans Saints CB Keenan Lewis has agreed to a restructured contract to save a bit on salary cap space.

-- Saints Re-Sign Joe Morgan --
Tue Mar 18, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have re-signed free-agent WR Joe Morgan to a one-year contract.

-- Saints Sign Erik Lorig --
Tue Mar 18, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The New Orleans Saints official website reports the Saints have signed FB Erik Lorig to a four-year contract

-- Joe Morgan Watch --
Tue Mar 18, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NBC Sports reports free-agent WR Joe Morgan has a couple of big obstacles to getting another job. One was a 2013 DWI charge that carried possible jail time if Morgan was convicted in a trial, but that no longer appears to be an issue. The Baton Rouge Advocate reports that Morgan has entered a diversion program that will employ monitoring, counseling and other social services to help him avoid future trouble instead of going through a trial. That leaves the knee injury that wiped out Morgan’s 2013 season as a major impediment to the next step of his NFL career. It was the second serious knee injury in the last three years for Morgan, whose speed appeared to have on track to nab a good-sized role in the Saints receiving corps last season.

-- Saints Eyeing Sidney Rice --
Mon Mar 17, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

NFL.com reports the New Orleans Saints are interested in free-agent WR Sidney Rice.

-- Saints Re-Sign Zach Strief --
Mon Mar 17, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have re-signed free-agent OT Zach Strief to a five-year, $20.5 million contract, including $8.5 million guaranteed.

-- Jed Collins an Unrestricted Free Agent --
Sun Mar 16, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints never tendered an offer to FB Jed Collins, making him an unrestricted free agent.

-- Saints Hosted Erik Lorig --
Sun Mar 16, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports free-agent FB Erik Lorig visited with the New Orleans Saints last week.

-- Travaris Cadet = Darren Sproles? --
Sat Mar 15, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports RB Travaris Cadet is a candidate to replace RB Darren Sproles in the New Orleans Saints' offense.

-- Zach Strief Shuns Dolphins; Expects to Re-Sign with Saints --
Fri Mar 14, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

The Miami Herald reports free-agent OT Zach Strief has turned down a visit with the Miami Dolphins. He expects to re-sign with the New Orleans Saints.

-- Saints Re-Sign Ramon Humber --
Fri Mar 14, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have re-signed LB Ramon Humber to a one-year contract.

-- Saints Trade Darren Sproles to Eagles --
Thu Mar 13, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports RB Darren Sproles, who Wednesday expressed a desire to be released by the New Orleans Saints, was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday for a fifth-round draft pick. "Darren Sproles is an unbelievable offensive weapon," Eagles HC Chip Kelly said. "He can do it all -- run, catch -- plus he's a proven winner. And on top of that, he can bring all of those dynamic skills to the return game as well. There is no question we were all excited once we found out we were going to be able to trade for him."

-- Darren Sharper Indicted Again --
Wed Mar 12, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

AP reports former New Orleans Saints S Darren Sharper has been indicted in Arizona on charges of sexual assault and administering dangerous drugs.

-- Darren Sproles Wants the Freedon of a Release --
Wed Mar 12, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Josina Anderson reports New Orleans Saints RB Darren Sproles wants his release. "I want to get released. I don't want to be traded. I don't know where they would send me because I have no control over it and I want to be able to pick. The good thing is none of the teams I'm told they're talking to are terrible. It's more than two. I feel I should have more of an idea later on today."

-- Saints Re-Sign Pierre Thomas --
Wed Mar 12, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN reports the New Orleans Saints have re-signed RB Pierre Thomas to a two-year extension, the latest move in what has been a busy offseason for New Orleans. The Saints announced the move Wednesday morning on their Twitter account. Financial terms were not disclosed.

-- Saints; Jairus Byrd Agree to Contract --
Tue Mar 11, 2014 --from FFMastermind.com

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the New Orleans Saints have reached agreement with free-agent S Jairus Byrd on a six-year, $54 million deal that includes $28 million guaranteed, sources said.