Brees, Saints Closer than Reported

NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 24: Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints in action during the game against the Cleveland Browns at the Louisiana Superdome on October 24 2010 in New Orleans Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Drew Brees

Yesterday, Ed Werder reported that Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints were still roughly $2 million apart in contract negotiations. Today, Mike Florio reports that both sides are actually much closer than that, only about $1 million apart.

Per a source with knowledge of the situation, that's not the case. Brees, we're told, has never asked for $21 million. And the Saints are believed to be offering more than $18 million, possibly closer to $19 million than $18 million.

While that's good news to hear, none of this makes sense. $1 million dollars is such an insignificant amount of money to both parties. So why cause all this conflict, make the organization look stupid and have Brees miss offseason workouts over so little money?

Again, the holdup is probably about something else like the structure of the contract or some sort of poison pill that Brees' agent wants inserted. Which is why none of this talk about money matters at all; that's probably never been the issue and it's still probably not a major factor.

UPDATE 3:30 PM:

Chris Mortenson is reporting that Drew is seeking $20.3 million annually in long-term contract talks with the Saints.

Profootballtalk reported Tuesday that the Saints are offering upwards of $19M annually. Per Mort, however, guaranteed money is the sticking point. "They've had some, what I call 'small talk'," Mort said. "... But it's those guarantees, that I think where the main battle ground is fought." Mortensen expects "some movement" in the 2-3 week period before training camp, after an arbitrator rules on whether Brees' 2012 franchise tag is valid. Brees' camp wants the price of the tag increased because he was also franchised by the Chargers in 2004.

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