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Saints re-sign free agent LB Ramon Humber

AP - Sports

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- The Saints have re-signed free agent linebacker and special teams player Ramon Humber to a one-year contract.

The announcement was made Friday by Mickey Loomis, the Saints' executive vice president and general manager.

The 5-foot-11, 232-pound reserve linebacker originally signed with Indianapolis in 2009 as an undrafted free agent, playing in the Colts' loss to New Orleans in Super Bowl XLIV.

A season later, he signed with the Saints and has been with the team since, becoming a key special teams player and a steady reserve linebacker.

Since 2010, he has 36 special teams tackles in the regular season and playoffs combined. The Saints finished the season with the league's seventh-best punting unit, but allowed 25.2 yards per kick return, ranking 26th in the NFL.

In 2013, playing in defensive coordinator Rob Ryan's system, he saw action in all 16 games, starting three of them. He finished with a career-high 24. Fourteen of his tackles came in his three starts, including a four-tackle, half-sack performance at New England.

Humber is the first Saints player who hit the free agent market to re-sign with the team. New Orleans watched as safety Malcolm Jenkins signed with Philadelphia.

Kicker Shayne Graham and linebacker Keyunta Dawson were scheduled to become free agents before re-signing with the Saints in February.

The Saints have been able to make a splash in free agency in spite of having little room to work with under the salary cap. The Saints began free agency less than $3 million under the salary cap.

The day Jenkins agreed to play for Philadelphia, New Orleans brought in and signed Jairus Byrd, a three-time Pro Bowl safety from Buffalo. Byrd will make $1.3 million in base salary in 2014.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

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