New Orleans Saints OTAs
Three things are certain in New Orleans: hurricane season, crawfish season and Drew Brees leading New Orleans Saints OTAs. While that may be a reach, nobody in New Orleans could have ever imagined that the Drew Brees contract dispute would have lingered into the start of Saints OTAs.
Last year at this time, the NFL had instituted a lockout and teams couldn't even hold OTAs. However, that didn't stop Drew Brees from holding his own OTAs for the New Orleans Saints. Brees' example became a model for other NFL team leaders to hold similar OTAs around the league.
In the 2012 offseason, the New Orleans Saints placed the franchise tag on Drew Brees and needless to say, he hasn't signed it. Brees once suffered a career-threatening injury with the San Diego Chargers and rightfully wants more security than the one-year franchise tag deal would offer. I don't blame him.
Because the Saints' front office is quibbling over one or two million dollars, Drew Brees was not present when New Orleans began OTAs on Tuesday. Given everything that has happened with the bounty scandal, Drew Brees should be the Saints leader in this time of crisis.
Because of the absence of Drew Brees at OTAs, people in New Orleans are opening talking about how the Saints would do with Chase Daniel at QB. In the past, such a discussion would have been fantasy football. But now, intelligent Saints fans are actually discussing this in 2012.
Most NFL players hate OTAs and their effectiveness as a predictor of future success is debatable. The Green Bay Packers did not hold OTAs last year and they went 15-1. I'm sure Drew Brees knows the offense pretty well and things will be fine once New Orleans pays the man.
My point is that the Saints playing hardball with the greatest player in franchise history is unnecessary. If paying Drew Brees $21 million this year would put New Orleans over the salary cap, I'm sure Mickey Loomis could find a couple of offensive players willing to restructure their contracts. This will likely happen before training camp anyway.
It's just that after what he did last year, I never thought I'd see a New Orleans Saints OTA without Drew Brees.
Patrick Michael lives in New Orleans and has always been a big fan of the New Orleans Saints. Patrick's favorite Saints season was 2009 when New Orleans won Super Bowl 44. Follow Patrick Michael on Twitter at patmichael84.
"New Orleans Saints begin OTAs," neworleanssaints.com
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