The New Orleans Saints are heading into the off season with several key contributors due to expire, and free agency is approaching rapidly. The list of unsigned players includes such names as Drew Brees, Marques Colston, and Carl Nicks. While it’s assumed that franchise quarterback Drew Brees will resign the Saints, it is bothersome that he has remained unsigned this long. What’s more bothersome is that Brees is just one of the players whose potential absence would be sorely felt.
All-Pro Guard Carl Nicks is set to become a free agent, he is coming off a great year, so he’s going to want a big contract, and if the Saints wont pay him, someone else will. Losing Carl Nicks would be a huge deal as his role in protecting Brees is crucial to the success of the Saints. Wide receiver Marques Colston will also demand to be paid like a top receiver, and when you look at his numbers, you can’t fault him for it. In his 6 years with the Saints, he’s racked up a 1,000 yards 5 times. His dominance at the wideout position is a key to the team’s success in opening up the pass game.
Besides those big three, wide receiver Robert Meachem and cornerback Tracy Porter will also become free agents. Meachem has continued to contribute as he’s had 600 plus yards recieving for 3 straight years. Porter is a quality nickel back, but his play hasn’t been as sharp as it was during the 2009-2010 season. There is a strong chance that these two players could find themselves with a new team that will simply shell out more money.
The Saints only have so much cap room, and with some new faces in coaching, there are bound to be some personnel changes. Let’s see how well the Saints can keep this talented squad together, and what new players they bring into replace some departing old faces.