Skip to content

Saints place exclusive franchise tag on Drew Brees

137367472_crop_650x440 Getty Images

A day after the Saints’ franchise was rocked to its foundation by news that defensive players received extra money to, among other things, inflict injuries on opponents, the Saints have earmarked a significantly larger pile of cash for a guy who plays offense.

Jay Glazer of FOX reports that the Saints have applied the franchise tag to quarterback Drew Brees.

A league source tells PFT that it’s the exclusive version of the tag, which prevents Brees from talking to any other teams — and which eliminates the risk of some other franchise offering Brees a huge contract and giving the Saints two first-round picks if the Saints choose not to match.

It’s not a surprise.  The non-exclusive tag for quarterbacks will cost roughly $14.4 million for 2012.  As explained Friday, just before the bounty brouhaha broke, the exclusive tender is expected to land between $15 million and $16 million, due in large part to the coming release of Peyton Manning and the recent restructuring of Ben Roethlisberger’s contract.

The move means that guard Carl Nicks will hit the market absent a new deal.  We reported last night that, as of Friday, the Saints hadn’t made Nicks an offer.

Permalink 55 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: New Orleans Saints, Rumor Mill, Top Stories
55 Responses to “Saints place exclusive franchise tag on Drew Brees”
  1. plum13sec says: Mar 3, 2012 3:55 PM

    They are rushing to do this before it might get stripped away by the league

  2. billinlouisiana says: Mar 3, 2012 3:58 PM

    Not surprised. Wish they would have done it earliuer and gave themselves more time to get a deal done with Nicks.

  3. stoutfiles says: Mar 3, 2012 3:58 PM

    Drew deserves better. He single handedly saved this franchise.

  4. andrejohnsonforpresident says: Mar 3, 2012 4:00 PM

    A lot of famous coaches have said its easier to hide a bad player at guard than anywhere else on the line. Personally I think “the best guard tandem” in the nfl is a little overrated. They arn’t very good at run blocking if you ask me. They can pass protect like a mother though.

  5. lombardihero says: Mar 3, 2012 4:02 PM

    Nicks should test the Market I mean that is why they all fought so hard though the strike.

  6. sterilizecromartie says: Mar 3, 2012 4:03 PM

    I admit I do not know the in’s and out’s of the NFL salary structure. But this just seems like a silly move by the Saints. Just give him a Brady-Manning type deal. He’s earned it. And it’s not like he is showing any signs of declining performance. So what happens if (when) he throws for another 5,000 yards this upcoming season. What will they just franchise him again?? Doesn’t sound like much of a long-term plan.

  7. vegassaint says: Mar 3, 2012 4:04 PM

    Finally some good news. Although a new deal would have been better. Now we gotta lock up nicks

  8. noahbird says: Mar 3, 2012 4:06 PM

    Nicks to the fins.

  9. smurfm69 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:10 PM

    Not sure what’s going on with this team. Is it really true that Brees turned down a long term deal last year that would have made him the highest paid player in the league? Is he asking for too much money or are the Saints low balling him? Perhaps his agent wanted to get a deal like the one Peyton Manning got. We all saw how it killed the Colts from being able to sign anyone else with all the money tied up in one player.

  10. donphin99 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:10 PM

    Being a dolphin fan, I don’t see why we woudln’t give up two first round picks for Brees. The asking price for RGIII seems higher…

  11. besdayz says: Mar 3, 2012 4:32 PM

    I’m surprised no one has talked about CAA representing both Nicks and Brees. By refusing 19 Mill a yr Brees basically forces the Saints to use the tag and frees up Nicks to a big contract elsewhere. This maximizes the CAA profit.

    Conflict of interest if there ever was….

  12. howmanyringsyourteamgot says: Mar 3, 2012 4:34 PM

    Saints offered Brees $18M a year he wants $23M per. Goodbye Nicks, Colston, Meachem, and Porter. Wont be long before that team is mediocre especially if Goodell strips them of draft picks.

  13. dolphan22 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:35 PM

    What a disrespectful act of settling for a guy who single handly resurrected your franchise.

  14. nardointhenati says: Mar 3, 2012 4:38 PM

    Im happy they got something done with Drew and yeah I’d like to see Nicks get a deal too but Colston would be my priority now.
    Im not worried about “Bountygate” that city and franchise survived Katrina…Im sure they’ll survive Roger.

  15. ihateyoujeff says: Mar 3, 2012 4:39 PM

    Maybe if he wasn’t a stat hungry and money hungry scumbag he would’ve taken the money the Saints put on the table. This would’ve let the Saints give Brees a pay increase while keeping a healthy cap number to pay the other 52 players on the roster to build a TEAM.

    Yea I guess when you’re already a multi millionaire though, a couple million dollars less wouldn’t allow Brees to put food on the table for his family.

  16. nflfollower says: Mar 3, 2012 4:40 PM

    Preemptive move before losing the right. Goodell better come up with something pretty severe!!

  17. cags777 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:46 PM

    Drew Brees deserves better than this. Also hope the NFL strips the Saints of the franchise tag for this year for the type of program they put on.

  18. clayton43 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:51 PM

    I dont see how offering Brees 18 million a year and him rejecting that is being disrespectful….I think it was disrespectful of him to turn it down and try to handcuff the franchise… Ya know, when Bree’s had shoulder surgury, alot of people thought he was done ( Chargers ) but the Saints gave him a chance and it worked out. I think is really dumb to say 18 million a year is disrespecting someone. Maybe the Colts ( as it turned out ) .. overpaid for Manning ???? He wants larger than Manning numbers. He plays in a dome and has most pass attempts in league… Hold firm Saints.. keep franchising him.. will be cheaper than the 23 million he is wanting and you can save money and sign some other players off of saving… see how the 23 million works out for ya Drew

  19. stoutfiles says: Mar 3, 2012 4:51 PM

    “Maybe if he wasn’t a stat hungry and money hungry scumbag he would’ve taken the money the Saints put on the table.”

    That stat hungry, money hungry scumbag not only makes the Saints a contender every year, he won them a Superbowl against P. Manning. He deserves to be overpaid.

  20. lilrob10201 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:51 PM

    Say goodbye Carl Nicks.

  21. mikeyhigs says: Mar 3, 2012 4:55 PM

    The idea that Goodell will strip the franchise tag is absurd. It has to be a punishment that would be consistent no matter which team did the crime. Would Goodell do it to a team who wasn’t going to use the tag? Absolutely not. He won’t do it to the Saints just to “get back at them” either.

  22. kane337 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:59 PM

    It would be awesome if Drew Brees holds out.

  23. emaimo80 says: Mar 3, 2012 4:59 PM

    Brooms stand on their own today due to planet alignment. If you don’t believe me, try it!

  24. txnsvols0489 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:00 PM

    Pic looks like Brees just blew a big one out

  25. friendlylittletrees says: Mar 3, 2012 5:01 PM

    The Saints are on their way back to being the Aints… They should have focused more of that ‘Bounty’ money towards keeping the best player in that cities history… instead, they are franchising him and looking stupid.

  26. WestCoastVet says: Mar 3, 2012 5:02 PM

    Nnnnnooooooooooooooooo!!!!! Well, crap! There goes my #BreesTo49ers hashtag. Unless Goodell strips them of the tag at least. I guess I have to focus my sights on Colston now.

  27. friendlylittletrees says: Mar 3, 2012 5:02 PM

    *city’s history…

  28. mschurm1 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:05 PM

    Good bye Carl Nicks.

  29. doe22us says: Mar 3, 2012 5:09 PM

    Drew Bress is selfish come on, the contract they are offering him will enable them to probably keep Nicks and Colston, but no self preservation he wants to get his, cant begrudge him there. However, dont paint him as pity old me $18 million at the tail end of your career is fair.

  30. benhenry11 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:11 PM

    Whether its a super exclusive contract or a super super exclusive contract or just a plain and simple franchise tag contract for Brees is just so irrelevant.

    The fact that the supposed leader of a team that cheats and is full of prison-tat bullies he it is really deserving that this nimrod faux leader be paid exactly what he deserves; yet another year in a loser city and with a team rife with cheats and bullies.

    This is the city of New Orleans, folks; with political and law enforcement shinnanigans. For Brees, it’ll be like solitary confinement just like the loser cops who murdered after Katrina. The media hyped that city and story to a weak nation of cultural idiots. From the mayor to sean payton…loosers all. Cheats. and highly paid very big bullies…hahahaha…yeah drew brees did not know anything about all that stuff…..bull squat!

  31. standrew26 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:11 PM

    I don’t think this is an insult to Brees anymore than I think Brees is greedy for demanding reasonable market value. Everybody here is an adult, they both want basically the same thing (pay Drew Brees lots of money to remain with the Saints), and it will get worked out eventually.

    It might get complicated if Loomis is fired, or it might help. Who knows?

    Hopefully the Saints can turn their attention (as much as possible to negotiating with Nicks or Colston (or even Meachem or Porter).

    The bounty scandal is despicable, but the Saints still have a football team to run in the meantime.

  32. oncall0599 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:12 PM

    If Drew Brees and (maybe more importantly) his agent were demanding a “Peyton Manning” type deal with $69M paid out in the 1st 3 years, then I’m happy the Saints didn’t cave. I’m a Saints fan and love Drew, but the deal Peyton Manning signed was a ridiculously structured, team-killing deal. Having one player take up 20% – 25% of a salary cap for a “team” of 53 players clearly limits the ability to have quality throughout the remaining 52. The Brady deal should be the benchmark, with Drew being paid slightly more than Brady to account for inflation. Drew should be happy with being the highest paid player in NFL history, which the Saints offer would have made him. If his legacy is important to him, he needs to consider how his contract will affect the team’s ability to sign the players Drew will need to help him win another Super Bowl. One championship doesn’t guarantee the Hall of Fame, but another one for Drew would.

  33. mylionsroaring says: Mar 3, 2012 5:15 PM

    The Lions are looking for a Nicks, I mean a guard LOL

  34. skol22 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:20 PM

    Welcome to Minnesota Nicks. Thats what you get Aints.

  35. palewook says: Mar 3, 2012 5:22 PM

    lol mod’s removed my comment for saying the saints need to have their draft class stripped in 2012.

    pft needs to fire some mods as well.

  36. trojanwarrior007 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:24 PM

    if I were Brees I’d want more money too considering the opposing defenses will wanna enact some “bounties” of their own.

  37. moneymike23 says: Mar 3, 2012 5:38 PM

    Didn’t you guys report that he wouldn’t sign this and would hold out.

  38. fringetastic says: Mar 3, 2012 6:14 PM

    I made a sarcastic comment yesterday about the lameness of using the word “Bountygate”, so in light of PFT not using it anymore… great job guys!

  39. chachanola says: Mar 3, 2012 6:16 PM

    Factor the fact that Manning did not play…. Ideally they can franchise him exclusively next year and the perentage rate will jump to 144% increase also TV rights money fr the league comes into play. Cap space will wiggle andhe will get his money. Now Nicks has been a little bi polar. You want to stay and in his words personally protect Brees but you have to be the highest paid to do it. Hmmm

  40. dirtdawg55 says: Mar 3, 2012 6:16 PM

    The Saints had no choice. Their franchise is distracted right now and Loomis could get tossed by Benson. They needed to franchise Brees to give themselves time to regroup.

    I doubt Nicks was going to get the money he wanted anyway. Harder to find a franchise QB than it is a serviceable guard – and you absolutely need the first and can get away with the latter to win in this league.

  41. breesforpresident says: Mar 3, 2012 6:24 PM

    I’m a die hard saints fan…. But this week has been rough. Apparently the bad decisions by management continue. I feel like Brees has been slighted. They should put him on a pedestal. Without him they’re nothing. How many have come and gone before him and failed?

  42. mancave001 says: Mar 3, 2012 6:47 PM

    I think Brees should tell them to pound sand. He’s an elite QB who won them a Super Bowl and shows no signs of slowing down. Not offering him a deal in absolutely unbelievable.

  43. tommyf15 says: Mar 3, 2012 7:12 PM

    What time is it?

    Holdout time.

    The Saints are screwed without Brees.

  44. nationalmediacansuckit says: Mar 3, 2012 7:20 PM

    I understand the business side, but isn’t it funny that a supposed injured/washed up QB and a joke franchise are both now both playing hardball.

  45. bucwild05 says: Mar 3, 2012 7:21 PM

    maybe I am looking at this wrong, but, if I have a QB that single handily saved the franchise, and is so important to the team, you would think that they would not have to put the “Tag” on him, and that they would actually have just worked the deal out.

  46. hitwithafade says: Mar 3, 2012 7:43 PM

    very glad they are going to keep the team together I love watching the Saints…however

    not a Saints fan….but I have a problem with Mike saying “franchise was rocked to its foundation by news that defensive players received extra money to, among other things, inflict injuries on opponents.”

    that just fits the paradigm that enables lawyers to
    get into the fray–when it was never stated– the orders from Williams went beyond the spirit of the League’s ever evolving definition of how to hit ( not that they didn’t)–I found in a google that 5 Saint players have been fined–Harrison alone has been cited and fined more times than that

  47. gdeli says: Mar 3, 2012 8:21 PM

    drew, you are a stud. You are classier than the defense. Wish we had you too. Sincerely a vikes fan.

  48. SeenThisB4 says: Mar 3, 2012 8:54 PM

    I stand with Saints Management.

    Drew Brees did not turn this team around single handed, in spite of what others may think. It takes a team of 53…not 1.

    But I will yield this: DREW BREES and his agent just wounded this team’s post season chances next year. Way to go Drew Brees.

  49. mikeeg says: Mar 3, 2012 9:30 PM

    First bounty’s now this? The team is classless

  50. mrslay1 says: Mar 3, 2012 9:47 PM

    Yea real smart clayton! then watch him be hurt for half the games and see what they do next year! The Saints are nothing without Brees and he will make or break them this year…keep that in mind.

  51. wiseguy12 says: Mar 3, 2012 9:59 PM

    Without Brees in the lineup Saints are maybe a 500 team. The top brass knew they needed to keep him off the free agent market and hopefully there will be no low-lifes out there trying to intentionally injure him and end the career of a great quarterback.

  52. 1phd says: Mar 3, 2012 10:25 PM

    PLEASE! Colston to San Francisco! Make it happen Trent!

  53. matthewcarlson1 says: Mar 4, 2012 1:26 AM

    Without Brees the Saints are a 500 team? HAHA no way wiseguy12! They wouldn’t win a game if they lost Brees. Colston and Nicks are gone.. the backs are an injury prone joke. Now that the Defense can’t hurt people they’re gonna suck. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  54. consolecomplaints says: Mar 4, 2012 1:59 AM

    The Saints offered Brees over $18 million a year, which is a bit more than Brady makes.

    Drew has the same agent as Peyton Manning, who was making something like $23 million in some years of his contract. (However, Peyton’s average was lower than $23 million.)

    Brady’s “hometeam” discount has allowed the Patriots to be contenders year in and year out, even making the superbowl recently and winning multiple championships. Peyton’s contract has crippled the Colts, who rarely go far in the playoffs and were ONE injury away (Peyton’s injury) from a horrible season.

    No player is worth $20 million + a year. That type of pay makes your team a one man operation, and when he gets hurt, the whole team is exposed as lacking at other positions. The Colts are a prime example.

    If Drew turned down a deal that lets him average $18 million a year for FIVE years, which is the rumor, then I would let him walk. He’s great, but the 49ers beat the Saints in the playoffs with a MUCH worse quarterback, but an overall better team. No one player is worth 1/6 of a team’s salary cap.

  55. pedrovillegas21 says: Mar 4, 2012 8:55 AM

    Becareful now that some team is willing to give up 2 #1’s to sign Brees (SanFran) being that trading up to get RGIII would cost more, don’t be surprised if Brees jumps ship

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!