Blog Entry

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Posted on: March 5, 2012 6:27 pm
This is Drew Brees' 'Wait, you really did franchise me?!' face. (Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

There were reports last week that the Saints and franchise quarterback Drew Brees were about $5 million per year apart on a new contract. General manager Mickey Loomis, who according to a Yahoo story thought of Brees as "very good" but not great, later told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that “I have always thought of Drew as a great player. Always."

New Orleans' forgettable offseason
Four days ago, this was easily the organization's biggest issue.

Then news broke that former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams was involved in a "pay for performance" bounty program, head coach Sean Payton and Loomis knew about it, and the Brees situation suddenly seemed less important. But the franchise tag waits for no man; scandals or not, the Saints had until 4 p.m. ET Monday to work out a new deal with Brees, franchise him, or let him hit the open market. New Orleans opted for the franchise tag and Brees isn't happy about it.

Details via Rapid Reporter Larry Holder:

"Brees is 'livid' about being … tagged and not receiving a long-term contract, according to WIST-AM in New Orleans. The radio station cites sources in the Brees camp that he will not sign the franchise tag deal. Brees and the Saints have until July 15 to hammer out a long-term deal. If a deal isn't struck, Brees must sign the franchise tag deal or hold out. "

It's rare that holding out is in the player's best interests; in general, the team has all the power but this could be a case where Brees is in a position to get exactly what he wants (and maybe more). Exacerbating matters for the Saints: the possible league sanctions the organization could face in light of the bounty program. If players are suspended and draft picks forfeited, New Orleans will need Brees more than ever. (It gets worse: two of the Saints' best offensive players, Carl Nicks and Marques Colston, are headed for free agency.)

Under the franchise tag that Brees reportedly has no intentions of signing, he's scheduled to make $15 million. In theory, the two sides have until July 16 to bang out a long-term contract but if Brees really is "livid" he may be in no mood to negotiate. Never mind the impending sanctions Roger Goodell might have in store for New Orleans, if Brees isn't the quarterback, the 2012 Saints will look a lot like the 2011 Colts. (Upside: they'll be perfectly positioned for a run at Matt Barkley!)

In the meantime, we'll reiterate what's Mike Freeman wrote last week: "What the hell are the Saints doing? I've said this before. There are certain players, only a handful, where you open the vault and roll out the cash. You give them a blank check. Brees is one of those players. Franchising Brees is going to anger him, no question. Players despise the tag because it limits their earning potential. So you've ticked off your best player. For what? Why?"

Why indeed.

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Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:55 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Boy does that org look stupid these days.  lets all be honest, Brees only needs to look to the colts, and see what happens when one plays in the final year of a deal.  Will he play this year w/o a deal?  Why?  $15M is not even close to the deal he will get on the open market. Sit out the year, rest.   He is a $120M/6 year guy.  Probably half would be why pull a Peyton and get injured now?

On top of that, with firings/sanctions and loss of draf picks ahead, whats the future in No anyways? 

Brees holds ALL the cards, and Loomis now has no leverage.

He should have gotten the signing done before bountygate

Since: Jul 11, 2011
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:48 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

It's not a "relatively paltry $5M difference," it was a $5M PER YEAR difference. The Saints wanted to pay Brees $18M per, (what Brady and Manning get), but Brees and his agent wanted $23M per year because Peyton's contract was structured to pay him that in 2011. That would kill their ability to keep Colston and Nicks or sign talented free agents under the cap.

Since: Apr 3, 2009
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:44 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Good for him. I would be "LIVID" as well if they tried to MAKE ME THE HIGHEST PAID PLAYER IN THE LEAGUE. 

Since: Sep 6, 2007
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:41 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Youre no better than the Saints.

Since: Mar 1, 2012
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:40 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

The franchise tag takes his ability away to negotiate.  Even if hes being greedy as an american he has the right to be greedy and to collective bargin. You wouldn't like your boss franchising you for 10 bucks an hour when you know your worth 20. No different the decimal point just changes .

Since: Sep 24, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:37 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

This is awesome!!   QB is pissed, team is being investigated, free agents may bolt!!

This is karma baby!!Like to run up the score?

See Colts game where they ran up 62, see Atlanta and Carolina cumulative 90-33front running bs!!

What goes around comes around.  

Bountygate should be cash, loss of 1st round pick and Payton suspended for 4 games.

NE lost a first for a CAMERA!!!!    

Since: Aug 11, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:16 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Hey, if he doesn't like it the time to fix the franchise tag is gone now that the league has ten years of labor peace.  If he didn't like it then he should have said something and gotten rid of it.

What leverage does he have now?  He will be paid the average of the top five salaries (or is it three) at his position.  What is he so mad about?

Since: Jan 2, 2012
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:14 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Oh great, well I guess they will just wind up giving him whatever he wants if they are smart.  I don't think he is going to like it when we can't sign any of the other free agents though and people start getting through that O-line on a regular basis.  If he wants to look out for number one we should just sign him to an expensive long term deal and just let our free agent O-linemen go until he's ready to restructure so he can stop getting beat up and we can afford decent O-linemen again. I'm afraid between this and the bounty business the window has been slammed shut on this teams realistic championship chances.  We'll still play some good ball, but we're going to look alot like the teams from the late 70s

Since: Nov 18, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 6:59 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

Brees should be livid.  He deserves a long term contract and is going to lose a lot of $$$.  The way the Saints 'D' tried to hurt other players, Brees IS going to pay the price.  He should be carted off this year with a long-term injury.  What comes around goes around!  Laughing  Karma is a *****!  Should have spoken up Drew!!  Warner's career was effectively ended by the Saints.  If I was playing the Saints I would definitely deliver a "knockout" on Brees!   

Since: Sep 17, 2007
Posted on: March 5, 2012 6:55 pm

Report: Drew Brees is livid about tag, won't sign

The Saints have no leverage here. The organization needs him far more than he needs he it so it makes no sense to tag him with a reported deal only held up by a relatively paltry $5M. Not a very good week for the Saints at all.

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