Thomas, 30, had two years remaining on his three-year, $6.9 million contract when the Saints elected to release him in a move that freed up $1.735 million in available cap space.
He is, arguably, the best running back still available, due to his effectiveness in third-down situations and in the screen game.
In 2014, Thomas ran for 222 yards on 45 carries (4.9 YPC) to go along with 45 receptions for 378 yards receiving and three touchdowns. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 9 running back in the league out of 57 qualifying players.
This comes just a day after RB Jamaal Charles went down with a non-contact knee injury. All indications are that Charles has a torn ACL and will subsequently miss the remainder of the 2015 season.
Tate, 27, signed a two-year, $6.2 million contract that included $2.5 million guaranteed with Cleveland back in March of last year. However, his time in Cleveland was short lived as he lasted until November before he was placed on waivers and later claimed by the Vikings.
Tate spent a little over a month with the Vikings before being cut again. The Steelers later were in need of a running back, and brought him in towards the end of the year.
In 2014, Tate ran for 371 yards on 119 carries (3.1 YPC) and four touchdowns over the course of 11 games.