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Report: Saints & Jimmy Graham “Several Million Dollars” Per Year Apart In Contract Talks

Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports reports that the New Orleans Saints and TE Jimmy Graham remain “several million dollars” per year apart in regards to extension talks.

  • According to Garafolo, the Saints have made it clear they will pay him more than Rob Gronkowski’s $9 million per year, but that is apparently still not enough for Graham.
  • Garafolo adds that the two sides are headed for a “franchise tag fight.”

Previous reports have indicated that Graham is prepared to challenge the tight end franchise tag if the Saints elect to use the designation on him in the coming weeks. The franchise tag for receivers last year was $10.54 million while the figure for tight ends came in at $6.07 million, or a difference of roughly $4.5 million.

The Patriots probably got a steal when they signed Gronkowski to an eight-year, $55.23 million contract that included just $13.17 million guaranteed. It’s really not surprising that Graham and his agent would be looking for more than this given production over the years, and the fact that he’s in line to be one of the most sought after players in the free agent market.

The Saints are projected to have around $5 million in cap space as things stand right now.

We have Graham listed as the No. 1 player in our Top 50 Free Agents list.