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Saints should lose at least 4-5 key starters this offseason

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Drew Brees is a free agent but he's fully expected to resign or be franchise tagged. His contract will eat up the vast majority of their cap space, though.

They have roughly $25M in cap space and Brees' deal will take up 18-20M of that, maybe more. After accounting for their draft picks, bare minimum guys to fill out their roster and leaving a bit of wiggle room they'll only have enough to sign one, MAYBE two of their key players.

Here's a list of their key free agents:

Offense
Marques Colston, WR
Robert Meachem, WR
Carl Nicks, OG

Defense
Aubrayo Franklin, DT
Shaun Rogers, DT
Jo-Lonn Dunbar, OLB
Tracy Porter, DB

If they resign either Nicks or Colston then along with Brees that'll be it for them. Wave goodbye to the rest of those guys on that list. At best they can retain maybe 3-4 of the low-end starters if they let both Colston and Nicks walk.

And don't forget, they're also without a 1st round pick. Should be interesting to see the totally "revamped" New Orleans team in 2012.

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I bet Bree's would take a discount.

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I am thinking the thing that dissapointed the Saints most about losing the playoff game was that they know they will not win the South next season.

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It won't be long until the Aints are back in the NFL cellar....just like they were for 40+ years before Brees came along. :D

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I don't see Colston re-signing; if Scarface is good as he thinks then he can do what Manning does and make UDFA's look like Pro bowlers.

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IMO we compete with the saints for the division next year. They will be vulnerable and the falcons and bucks look to be in decline.

I also would love to get nicks or either of their DTs.

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[quote name='Cold Cat']I bet Bree's would take a discount.[/QUOTE]

At his age, I sure wouldn't.

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Oh, and in addition to their FA losses, they (along with the Falcons) are replacing their DC.

The Falcons are also replaced their OC.

And the Bucs are replacing their entire coaching staff.

If Chud ends up staying, the most stability in the NFCS will be in Charlotte.

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[quote name='Cold Cat']I bet Bree's would take a discount.[/QUOTE]

As of now it's expected that he'll get the franchise tag, which will be right around what I said (18-20M).

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[quote name='tiger7_88']At his age, I sure wouldn't.[/QUOTE]

I see him doing it for the reason that he'd like to make another run for the SB. I don't think Bree's is worried about the money.

I believe that he could get the tag as well Rock but I just think if he signs a new deal it'll have a discount on it.

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He was a 2nd round pick and didn't receive much attention when he first hit free agency due to his injury at the time. This is his best chance for a huge payday. If he takes a discount I wouldn't expect it to be much of one.

He's already making around $10M a year now. I would think at the very best they'd resign him at 14-16 per year but even so that wouldn't change the situation they're in all that much.

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He won't take a discount. He and the team will say he did, just for image, but Drew wants his, don't doubt that for a minute.

Remember the labor negotiations? Do you really think the guy that fought so hard then is going to take one on the chin now?

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