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Saints 2016 Calendar Boys: Who Will Stay and Who Will Go?

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Six of the 12 stars of the 2015 NFL/NFLPA Saints wall calendar did not actually finish the year on the Saints roster. Two of the 12 players featured on the 2016 version are already gone pecans. What does fate have in store for the other 10 Saints calendar boys of 2016?

Ghost keeps his Saints wall calendar next to the fridge!
Ghost keeps his Saints wall calendar next to the fridge!

Every year, the NFL and NFLPA combine forces to squeeze more $$ out of their shared fan base by publishing wall calendars for each of the 32 NFL teams.

To serve fan interest, the publisher attempts to feature large photos of prominent, star players for each team for each month of the year. Due to limitations imposed on the process by the release date of May 2015 for the 2016 calendars (according to research on Amazon.com), it involves a certain amount of guess work to accurately project who will actually shine or even still be on the roster by the time the season ends.

I received a Saints 2015 wall calendar as a gift from a friend, and by the time the sun set on the year, only six of the 12 players on that calendar were still on the team.

Here's how that looks in chart form:

Month

Player

Status

January

Jimmy Graham

Traded - March 2015

February

Pierre Thomas

Released - March 2015

March

Cameron Jordan

Still on team

April

Ben Grubbs

Traded - March 2015

May

Marques Colston

Still on team

June

Jahri Evans

Still on team

July

David Hawthorne

Still on team

August

Kenny Stills

Traded - March 2015

September

Drew Brees

Still on team

October

Akiem Hicks

Traded - September 2015

November

Benjamin Watson

Free Agent

December

Curtis Lofton

Released - March 2015

This year for Christmas, my grandson gave me the 2016 Saints wall calendar (and I gave him the 2016 Vikings wall calendar since he likes the Vikes best because of Teddy Bridgewater from UofL), and at this point (very early in 2016), two of the 12 players are already gone. Hell, things are so bad with the Saints roster management that the two of them were gone BEFORE the 2015 regular season even started.

Here's how the 2016 calendar boys look as of now:

Month

Player

Status

January

Drew Brees

Still on team

February

Cameron Jordan

Still on team

March

Brandin Cooks

Still on team

April

Kenny Vaccaro

Still on team

May

Zach Strief

Still on team

June

Marques Colston

Still on team

July

Stanley Jean-Baptiste

Waived - September 2015

August

Keenan Lewis

Still on team

September

Mark Ingram

Still on team

October

Junior Galette

Released - July 2015

November

Jahri Evans

Still on team

December

Jairus Byrd

Still on team

For these 10 remaining 2016 Calendar Boys on the Saints' active roster, I'll take us on a spin through their respective statuses with sizzling hot takes (or Hot Reads, if you prefer) on their outlooks for still being on the roster at the start of the 2016 regular season.

Not going anywhere:

Drew Brees, QB, (Signed through 2016, FA 2017) - He'll have his deal extended to provide immediate cap relief while still paying him what he's worth. Saints plan to ride this HOFer until he's broke in two and of no use to them anymore.

Cameron Jordan, DE, (Signed through 2020, FA 2021) - He's the best pash rusher on the team, and locked up long term.

Brandin Cooks, WR, (Signed through 2017, Club Option 2018) - He was the top wideout for the Saints in 2015, he's still on his rookie contract and the sky's the limit in 2016.

Kenny Vaccaro, SS, (Signed through 2016, FA 2017) - Improved on a shaky second year in 2014 to give rise to some talk of him as a rising defensive star (again). Since it's a contract year, he'll need to prove his value for a big payday.

Mark Ingram, RB, (Signed through 2018, FA 2019) - Payton has got Ingramania!!! for his main back, and he comes at a reasonable price.

Jairus Byrd, FS, (Signed through 2019, FA 2020) - In a s***** secondary, he's not terrible. He's definitely not fully earning his fat contract, but there's still time for him to EARN some if IT.

Keenan Lewis, CB, (Signed through 2017, FA 2018) - In a s***** secondary, he's also not terrible, and despite ALL this: he's turning 30 this year, he had ANOTHER surgery earlier this month, and only played in six games in 2015, he'll definitely be back because the secondary is just that s***** right now.

Zach Strief, RT, (Signed through 2018, FA 2019) - Dude has his faults, and he's getting up in years, but he's generally ok, and he'll start if Andrus Peat doesn't take his job in Saints Training Camp 2016 by Calvin Klein. Since he's said he'd be ok serving as a backup, he's squarely in the safe zone for staying on the roster.

Probably not going anywhere:

Jahri Evans, G, (Signed through 2017, FA 2018) - Missed final two games of 2015 with an ankle injury, and certainly his skills seem a bit on the decline at age 32, but he is still good, so his spot is pretty secure. Could he be on Khai-loo's short list for a restructuring? Could it turn ugly? Would they trade him for a decent draft pick? Not if it means Tim Lelito takes his spot.

Probably gone:

Marques Colston, WR, (Signed through 2016, FA 2017) - This stalwart of the receiving corps since 2006 has seen a more reduced role in the offense in each of the last three seasons, posting career lows in games started, number of targets, receptions, yards, yards per reception, and touchdowns in 2015. Word on the street is that he'd have to take a pay cut to stay on the team, and that's only if the team sees value in keeping an aging player on at a reduced rate when they need to have young talent in that position.

Stu asked for some List material and here it is. A whole post of it with room for more in the comment section. So, what do YOU think? What are these Calendar Boys chances for staying or going?