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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Saints' Jimmy Graham headlines free agent class of 2014

By on 1/18/2014 01:00:00 PM

Star tight end Jimmy Graham will be a top priority for the Saints to re-sign this offseason. If Graham hits the open market, he will become a top priority for many other suiters.'s Around The League released their list of 2014's potential free agents and Graham is number one.

By Jeffrey Beall via Wikimedia Commons
Earlier this week, Drew Brees spoke of his willingness to restructure his current contract to free up cap space for the Saints to use to keep the team a Super Bowl contender. The team may need it, as Graham is expected to fetch a pretty penny at market.

Of Around The League's top 25 free agents-to-be, only Graham and WR Eric Decker (#19) are offensive skill position players. Graham would, by far, be the cream of the crop and most desirable for a team willing to open up the checkbook and make a splash.

The Saints still have plenty of time to re-sign Graham to a contract extension before he becomes an unrestricted free agent. They also have the option of using the franchise tag on  Graham, which would keep him in a Saints uniform for one more season, while an extension is hopefully worked out.

Though his production went noticeably absent in the playoffs, Graham is considered a player on the rise, at 27 years of age. He set a career-high in touchdown receptions this season with 16 and went over the thousand yard mark for the second time in his four seasons in the NFL. However, in the Saints' two playoff games, Graham had just four catches for 52 yards.

Clearly a top weapon, if not the top weapon, in New Orleans, the Saints will likely do whatever they can in the coming months to prevent Graham from fielding other offers from around the NFL.

You can follow all the NFC South action on Twitter @nfcsouthinjury or me @robsirloin. In addition to covering the NFC South, I also document the misadventures of the Cleveland Browns for Dawg Pound Daily.


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