Saints Rumors

Saints’ Drew Brees To Miss Six Weeks?

Saints quarterback Drew Brees has been diagnosed with a torn ligament in his right thumb, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). He’ll need surgery to fix the issue, which will likely keep him out for six weeks. 

From here, the Saints will have to decide whether to place Brees on injured reserve, or keep him on the active roster. Placing Brees on IR would free up a place on the 53-man squad, but it would rule Brees out for a full eight weeks. Given Brees’ importance to the team, it seems likely that he won’t go on IR, but we should know for sure in the coming hours.

While Brees is out, backup Teddy Bridgewater figures to start for the Saints at quarterback. Of course, Taysom Hill also looms in the background.

Previous to this, Brees hadn’t missed a game since 2015. Even though Brees has beaten the odds, and Father Time, for many years, no one can escape the injury bug forever in football.

Bridgewater is the highest-paid backup in the NFL, and the team gave up draft capital to acquire him in the first place, so they clearly have confidence in the one-time Vikings star. The 26-year-old finished Sunday’s game having completed 17 of his 30 attempts for 165 yards and no touchdowns.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Drew Brees “Concerned” About Thumb Injury

Quarterback Drew Brees left the Saints’ loss to the Rams today after injuring the thumb on his throwing hand. Following the game, the future Hall of Famer didn’t sound particularly optimistic about his ailment.

“Yeah I am concerned,” Brees told reporters (including ESPN’s Mike Triplett). “I’m hoping it’s not too significant.”

Brees revealed that he injured his thumb after hitting the hand of Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald. The veteran didn’t return to the game, and he was seen with a lower hand/wrist wrap as he stood on the sideline. Brees told reporters after the game that he already underwent x-rays and is set to visit a hand specialist, and he warned that his status is “all up in the air right now” (via Katherine Terrell of The Athletic on Twitter).

As Triplett notes, the durable quarterback has missed only one single game since high school: a 2015 matchup against the Panthers when he was recovering from a shoulder injury. Brees also suffered a major shoulder injury towards the end of the 2005 season, but he managed to return in time for the start of the 2006 campaign.

While losing Brees would naturally have a significant impact on their season, the Saints believe highly in their backups. Teddy Bridgewater is the highest-paid backup in the NFL, and the team gave up relatively-significant draft capital to acquire him in the first place. The 26-year-old finished Sunday’s game having completed 17 of his 30 attempts for 165 yards and no touchdowns. The Saints are also rostering quarterback Taysom Hill, although the coaching staff seems to prefer him in his Swiss-Army-knife role.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Saints, Sean Payton Agree To Extension

The Saints and head coach Sean Payton have agreed to a five-year extension, according to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports (on Twitter). Prior to the new deal, Payton was in Year Four of a five-year, $45MM deal. 

The financial terms of the new deal are not yet known, but it’s likely that Payton has received a bump over his previous $9MM/year salary. The 55-year-old coach will now be tied to the Saints past the age of 60, lining him up to retire in New Orleans.

In recent years, several teams have made overtures towards Payton, including the Cowboys, where Payton previously cut his teeth. As the Saints’ head coach, Payton has coached his way to a 119-74 overall record, including one Super Bowl ring.

This year, he’s aiming for more jewelry in his 13th season on the sidelines for the Saints.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Saints, Sean Payton Agree To Five-Year Extension

The Saints and head coach Sean Payton have agreed to a five-year extension, per Jay Glazer of FOX Sports (Twitter link). Payton was already under contract through 2020, and it sounds as though his extension will replace the final year of his prior deal. Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that Payton will now be under club control through 2024 (Twitter link).

Although salaries for coaches are generally not officially disclosed, Payton was already believed to be one of the highest-paid coaches in the game, with multiple sources suggesting he was pulling down an annual income of about $9MM. It could be that his new contract will also increase his compensation.

And for good reason. Payton has compiled a 119-74 regular season record since he was hired in 2006, and though he has had the distinct privilege of working with Drew Brees since that time, he has developed some elite offensive units during his tenure. He is the winningest HC in franchise history, and he coached the Saints to their only Lombardi Trophy in 2009. Like Brees, Payton came to New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, so Saints fans are especially fond of him.

After three straight 7-9 finishes from 2014-16, Payton has righted the ship with back-to-back division titles. Though Saints fans don’t need to be reminded, his club came within a missed PI call of advancing to Super Bowl LIII last season.

The Saints have captured five NFC South titles during Payton’s tenure and have qualified for the playoffs seven times. This extension should also quiet the Payton-to-Dallas rumors that have persisted for some time.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/12/19

Today’s practice squad updates:

Buffalo Bills

Chicago Bears

  • Signed: DL Abdullah Anderson
  • Released: LB James Vaughters

Cleveland Browns

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

Philadelphia Eagles

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

  • Signed: TE Donald Parham

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/10/19

Baltimore Ravens

Houston Texans

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Rams

Minnesota Vikings

New Orleans Saints

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

 

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/9/19

Here are Monday’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

Pittsburgh Steelers

Saints Will Not Pursue Antonio Brown

  • Any team that signs Brown will guarantee 25% of his 2019 salary, per OverTheCap’s Jason Fitzgerald (on Twitter), because of termination pay rules. However, if one of the other three teams playing on Monday night — the Texans, Saints or Broncos — sign Brown before their respective games (extremely unlikely), Brown’s salary would be fully guaranteed.
  • Count the Saints out, however, with Sean Payton quickly indicating (via NOLA.com’s Herbie Teope, on Twitter) his team will not pursue the volatile All-Pro. This figures to be a theme, but there will certainly be teams that investigate this situation for a possible free agent signing.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/5/19

Here are Thursday’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Denver Broncos

  • Released from IR via injury settlement: LB Joe Dineen

Los Angeles Rams

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

Washington Redskins

NFL Cap Space By Team For 2019

With hours to go before the start of the 2019 NFL season, here’s a rundown of how much cap room each NFL team has (via ESPN.com’s Field Yates, on Twitter):

  1. Indianapolis Colts – $42.1MM
  2. Cleveland Browns – $32.7MM
  3. Miami Dolphins – $31.9MM
  4. Houston Texans – $29.5MM
  5. Buffalo Bills – $24.8MM
  6. Tennessee Titans – $24.1MM
  7. Dallas Cowboys – $22.3MM
  8. Detroit Lions – $19.2MM
  9. San Francisco 49ers – $18.7MM
  10. Chicago Bears – $17.3MM
  11. Carolina Panthers – $16.6MM
  12. Washington Redskins – $15.9MM
  13. Philadelphia Eagles – $14.8MM
  14. Cincinnati Bengals – $13.3MM
  15. Kansas City Chiefs – $12.4MM
  16. Oakland Raiders – $12MM
  17. Denver Broncos – $11.2MM
  18. Green Bay Packers – $10.8MM
  19. Los Angeles Chargers – $10.2MM
  20. Jacksonville Jaguars – $9.5MM
  21. New York Jets – $9.3MM
  22. Seattle Seahawks – $8.6MM
  23. Baltimore Ravens – $8.2MM
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers – $6.3MM
  25. New England Patriots – $4.9MM
  26. Arizona Cardinals – $2.7MM
  27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – $1.2MM
  28. Minnesota Vikings – $1.2MM
  29. Los Angeles Rams – $852K
  30. New Orleans Saints – $604K
  31. Atlanta Falcons – $493K
  32. New York Giants – $457K