At last glance, it seems that over a fourth of CSC nation believe we should just do this. Brees is worth it. As Teddy would say in Rounders, "Give the man his money".
Like basically all of you, I
think know that Drew Brees is irreplaceable and is worth as much as we can pay him. But he has to come down on his asking price if he wants to keep the best players in a Saints uniform.
1) What do you do with Jimmy Graham? His current contract has him making under $600,000 in 2012 and 2013. If he duplicates last season in 2012, no chance in hell he's content playing for $575,000 in 2013. He probably isn't thrilled now playing for $540,000. Pretty easy to assume he'll be making a lot of money very soon.
2) Linebackers from 2012 to 2013 increase in contract: Lofton will earn 5.3 million more in 2013 than he is in 2012. Hawthorne will earn 3.3 million more in 2013. Vilma will earn 5.9 million more in 2013. It's easy to assume Vilma is gone after this season and if he was, 2 linebackers will add an extra 8.6 million to the cap in 2013.
3) Despite Colston signing a new deal, it was very friendly for 2012. He will make $3.3 million more in 2013. And it only grows further after that.
So we're talking about 11.9 million more added to the cap along with whatever huge increase in pay coming to Graham. I'll be generous and say 15 million more between 4 starters. So all of a sudden if Brees made 23 mil a year, 8 starters (Brees, Smith, Evans, Grubbs, Lofton, Hawthorne, Colston, Graham) would make up almost half our cap space.
Think of the guys I have still yet to mention, and you can see that some good players would need to go and be replaced by very cheap players.
I hope the Saints can find a way to sign Brees under this season's cap and pay him huge this year. Whatever his contract is, he gets paid most this season while so many good players get paid well under value. Then his contract starts to descend with maybe performance bonuses tied into them.
There needs to be a happy medium if he still wants to keep talent around him. Brees is the franchise, but without talent around you, more Super Bowl rings become nearly impossible to see in today's NFL.