Drew Brees Ready to Roll With or Without Jimmy Graham
The New Orleans Saints just kicked off the start of their mandatory minicamps this week. Star quarterback, Drew Brees commented on the obvious absence of tight end, Jimmy Graham, due to Graham’s current franchise tag dispute. Because a contract is not in place, Graham is not required to participate in the mandatory three-day minicamp.
— CBS Fantasy Football (@CBSFantasyFB) June 11, 2014
Brees had this to say, as reported by USA Today..
I’d hate to not have Jimmy. I’m very confident that a deal will get done. But if it doesn’t, you worry about what you do have and who you do have out there.
Graham’s absence should a contract not get worked out, leaves a huge gap, as he had 1,215 yards and 16 touchdowns last season.
Brees, however, remains positive that the slack will be picked up no matter what, further commenting..
Hey, we do what we do. It’s nice when you can have guys like Jimmy, and obviously he’s a big part of our offense. If he’s in there, we’re going to try to get him the ball. We’re game-planning ways to get him the ball, ways to put him in the best position to succeed. But if he’s not, somebody else is going to get those touches. We’ll put those guys in position.
That’s a bit sketchy, though considering the team let Darren Sproles and Lance Moore go in the free-agency period.
Graham, who lined up in two-thirds of his receptions last season either as slot or wide receiver, has a grievance hearing pending regarding his franchise tag. The difference in salary from a tight end designation at $7.035 to a wide receiver salary of $12.3, is over $5 million, most definitely worth fighting for.
Not foreign to contract disputes, is Brees, who missed offseason activities in 2012 before he solidified his $100 million, five-year contract.
In conclusion, Brees reported..
I expect to have him, but it’s just like if he gets injured. What happens if he gets hurt? You’ve got to roll without him. The one game he was hurt back in 2012, I think we threw for about 400 (yards).
I’m hoping the Graham and the Saints work something out. The team would surely struggle at first without him. Plus, we need our stud fantasy football tight end catching from Drew Brees. -FFC
Others seem to agree.
Drew Brees said the Saints would be fine without Jimmy Graham huh….#YeaRight
— Lawrence Brooks (@BigLBoog) June 11, 2014