Jimmy Graham is hands-down the best tight end in the game of football. He’s an excellent blocker, who just happened to lead the NFL in receiving touchdowns with 16 TD grabs. Moreover, the offseason is now here for the New Orleans Saints, which means this organization has a lot of questions and not too many answers. The team isn’t losing too many players to free agency, but Graham could be one of the biggest in franchise history.
The Saints have yet to hammer out a long-term deal for Graham, which could mean that New Orleans is gearing up to give its tight end the franchise tag this summer. However, the franchise tag would likely be an expensive one even though Graham is technically a tight end, because the Saints use him more like a wide receiver than anything else. Therefore, the NFL would likely insist for the Saints to pay Graham a one-year salary of over $11.5 million, instead of the $6 million that is given to tight ends that are handed the franchise tag.
Unfortunately for the Saints, quarterback Drew Brees signed an expensive five-year contract extension in the summer of 2012, so New Orleans might be a little weary of shelling out serious coin to Graham. At 27 years old, Graham has a bright career still ahead of him, but it’s looking more and more unlikely that he will be playing for the Saints in 2014 and beyond.