Saints News, 3/12/14: Jairus Byrd Says Saints' 'Winning Culture' Brought Him To New Orleans

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

“The winning culture,” Byrd said Wednesday when asked what motivated him to sign with the Saints. “What coach Payton has done and what Drew Brees has done here. Any time you have that explosive offense, it always helps. If you’re a guy on defense and you know a team is able to get leads on people, jump out to early leads, that bodes well for guys like me who want to get turnovers and create turnovers because it makes another team one dimensional...That’s a really big factor and what allowed me to weigh all my options and think about what the best situation was for myself.”

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Welcome to Byrdland

John DeShazier: Jairus Byrd signing is a game-changing move for New Orleans Saints
Mickey Loomis, Saints work their magic again

New Orleans Saints go 'all-in' on Jairus Byrd - ESPN
They say the NFL is a copycat league, and Byrd is the closest thing to Seattle Seahawks ball hawk Earl Thomas that the Saints could get their hands on. He'll be paired with emerging young safety Kenny Vaccaro, and he’ll be a huge addition for a young Saints defense that was already soaring in the right direction last year.

New Orleans Saints agree to deal with Jairus Byrd - ESPN
The New Orleans Saints reached agreement with former Buffalo Bills safety Jairus Byrd on a six-year, $54 million deal that includes $28 million guaranteed, sources told ESPN's Josina Anderson and ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

Jairus Byrd, Saints agree on six-year, $56M contract - NFL.com
Jairus Byrd and the New Orleans Saints have agreed to terms on a six-year, $56 million contract. The three-time All-Pro safety spent the first five seasons of his pro career on the Buffalo Bills.

Free agency 2014 live blog | The MMQB with Peter King
Update Tuesday, 12:27 AM EDT Broncos deliver first shocker by signing cornerback Aqib Talib Greg A. Bedard writes: The contract given to Jairus Byrd by the Saints raised more than a few eyebrows, but the Broncos swooping in and signing Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib for six years and $57 milli...

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Saints sign Pierre Thomas to 2-year extension

New Orleans Saints and Pierre Thomas agree to terms on a two-year extension
Pierre Thomas led all NFL running backs with 77 receptions in 2013

Saints choose Pierre Thomas over Darren Sproles - ESPN
Trading Sproles and reworking Thomas’ deal should give the Saints enough space to fit Byrd under the salary cap (assuming the Saints back-loaded Byrd's monster six-year, $54 million contract). But New Orleans will still need to carve out some more space to sign other players.

Pierre Thomas signs 2-year extension with New Orleans Saints - ESPN
The New Orleans Saints have re-signed running back Pierre Thomas to a two-year extension, the latest move in what has been a busy offseason for New Orleans.

Stop fretting, Saints fans — Pierre Thomas is staying put, agent says | Black and Gold

Pierre Thomas stays in New Orleans, agrees to new two-year deal | ProFootballTalk
Pierre Thomas won't be going anywhere after all. Thomas, the running back who was rumored to be on the verge of getting traded or cut by the Saints, will instead stay in New Orleans after agreeing to a new contract.

New Orleans Saints Lock Up Pierre Thomas Until 2016
New Orleans Saints Lock Up Pierre Thomas Until 2016

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Darren Sproles prefers to be released by Saints instead of traded

Darren Sproles of New Orleans Saints says he wants to be released - ESPN
The Saints decided to trade, instead of release, Sproles because there was so much interest from other teams when he was shopped as trade bait, a source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

Darren Sproles to Saints: Cut me, don’t trade me | ProFootballTalk
"I want to get released," Sproles said. "I don’t want to be traded. I don’t know where they would send me because I have no control over it and I want to be able to pick. The good thing is none of the teams I’m told they’re talking to are terrible. It’s more than two. I feel I should have more of an idea later on today."

New Orleans Saints intend to trade Darren Sproles - ESPN
The New Orleans Saints have not released running back Darren Sproles and now plan to trade him due to interest in him, according to a source.

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Other Saints news

New Orleans Saints to host HSPD Leadership Program presented by the National Guard
The event will take place at the New Orleans Saints facility on June 14th

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Darren Sharper, WTF!?

Darren Sharper indicted in Arizona on charges of drugging 3, raping 2 | NOLA.com
Former Saints star Darren Sharper has been indicted on charges of drugging and raping two women in Tempe, Arizona, according to his attorney there,

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NFL News

As expected, Buccaneers release Darrelle Revis | ProFootballTalk
The Buccaneers are doing business in bulk, but their biggest move is ending with a whimper. The anticipated release of cornerback Darrelle Revis is now official, per Mike Garofolo of FOX Sports.

Patriots gain some cap space by cutting Isaac Sopoaga | ProFootballTalk
The Patriots have lined up visits with several free agents over the last two days, but they have yet to add anyone to the roster. On Wednesday, they dropped someone. Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com reports that the team has told defensive tackle Isaac Sopoaga that he will be released.

Buccaneers agree to two-year deal with Josh McCown | ProFootballTalk
Josh McCown now has his chance to start. Which could be the start of something else for his new team. McCown's agent Mike McCartney just tweeted out word that his client had agreed to a new two-year deal with the Buccaneers.

Lions strike five-year deal with Golden Tate | ProFootballTalk
The defending Super Bowl champions are losing one of their key passing game targets. The Lions and Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate have reached a five-year contract, multiple media outlets reported Wednesday. Tate told ESPN's Josina Anderson that the contract is for $31.

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Video

VIDEO: Davonta Freeman can fill Sproles's void with New Orleans Saints - NFL Videos
NFL Draft Analyst Daniel Jeremiah says there is a lot of value to be found in the 2014 NFL draft at the running back position for the New Orleans Saints and Florida State RB Davonta Freeman might be that guy.

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