The Saints and Drew Brees are far apart in their negotiations for a long-term deal which could lead to something players despise: the franchise tag.
But before we get into that, let's go down the list of things to like about Drew Brees. He's coming off a record-setting year. He's one of the top three quarterbacks in football. Pretty good, so far. He's an excellent teammate, great leader and solid guy. More? Not a blemish off the field. More? He was a key party of New Orleans' recovery from Hurricane Katrina. On and on it goes.
Which is why it's a total mystery the Saints have yet to work out a deal with Brees. A league source says the two sides remain far apart and confirmed an ESPN report that New Orleans might use the franchise tag on Brees on Monday. Now, the ESPN report is slightly deceptive because if a team does use its franchise tag, they have until July 15 to work out a long-term deal and remove the tag.
My point is: 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?
The Saints want Brees and Brees wants to be a Saint, so in the end, Brees will get his long-term deal. It's just that the team is making Brees sweat it out. And that's just plain foolish.