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XLIV 5 Years Later: The Future of Jahri Evans

Five years after the Saints won Super Bowl XLIV, only eight players remain from that championship team. Here we look at the future of one of those players, Jahri Evans.

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

On February 7, 2010 in Super Bowl XLIV, New Orleans Saints offensive guard Jahri Evans was an integral part of an offensive line that allowed Quarterback Drew Brees to pick apart the Indy defense with ruthless precision.  In the 2009 season, Evans was arguably the best player on arguably the best offensive line in the NFL.  Following his stellar season in 2009, Evans signed a seven-year contract worth $56 million, making him the highest paid offensive guard in NFL history.  Starting with 2009, Evans was selected to six consecutive Pro Bowls.

Jahri Evans has not just been good over his career, he has been exceptional.  After being drafted in the fourth round in 2006, Evans won the starting job his rookie year and never looked back.  The Saints have never had to question who would play his position since day one, but following a disappointing 2014 season, Evans' own superior ability has now come into question.  Jahri Evans has long been the standard for an offensive guard in the NFL, and to have to see decline in that standard is honestly jarring.

The Saints front office and coaching staff now have to take a look at what comes after Evans at the offensive guard position for the first time since his arrival.  Although Evans showed signs of age and decline in 2014, he did not just fall off the edge completely.  He is still well above average at the position, and should play out his contract through the 2016 season.  The big question for the organization will be whether he is worth the nearly $7 million he will make in 2015 and $8 million he is due in his final contracted year of 2016.  That remains to be seen.

Evans' contributions to the 2009 Saints season and subsequent Super Bowl XLIV title are vast and underrated.  His impact and contributions have not only been enough to easily make the New Orleans Saints Hall of Fame, they may be enough to get him into Canton for the NFL Hall of Fame once his career is over.  The Saints though, need to begin searching for his replacement in the 2016 Draft or through free agency following the 2016 season.