Sean Payton Not Happy About QB Drew Brees Zip Lining

Brees throws against the Panthers

Drew Brees‘ safety turned out to be no joking matter for Saints coach Sean Payton, Christopher Dabe of the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports.

During an appearance Monday on The Rich Eisen Show, Payton said he was at the beach July 2 when he saw a Twitter message that included a photo of the Saints quarterback riding a homemade zip line that went from the patio of his Del Mar, Calif., home and into an inflatable backyard swimming pool.

In what appeared at the time to be a playful response from the coach, Payton wrote, “Ughhh, all we need are the fireworks!!!”

That response turned out to have a rather serious tone. And the exchange did not end there.

Payton said on the radio show that he received a message from Brees’ wife immediately after he posted that Twitter response.

“Brittany sent me a text right away and said, ‘tell me if you want me to make him stop.’ I’m like, ‘I want you to make him stop,'” Payton said.

Could the Saints Be in Play for QB Paxton Lynch in Thursday’s NFL Draft?

Paxton Lynch

The Saints could be looking at their QB for the future during Thursday’s NFL Draft. The team knows that Drew Brees can’t play forever, and one player the team may focus on is Paxton Lynch.

Marc Sessler of NFL.com wrote today that Lynch is a player that has drawn strong interest from New Orleans

Two days away from the 2016 NFL Draft, the Saints have emerged as a team with plenty of interest in landing a promising rookie quarterback.

NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Tuesday that New Orleans staged internal talks about moving up to No. 1 before the Los Angeles Rams swung a monster deal with the Titans for the first overall pick. The terms of that swap proved too costly for the Saints, but could they have their eye on Paxton Lynch out of Memphis?

“If they feel strongly about Paxton Lynch, they are a team to watch late in the Top 10,” Rapoport tweeted.

Armed with the No. 12 overall pick, the Saints sit in solid position to move up if they believe the 49ers (at No. 7) or Browns (at No. 8) could jump on Lynch come Thursday night.

NFL Media draft expert and former league scout Daniel Jeremiah also sees New Orleans addressing their depth under center, matching Lynch with the Saints at No. 12 in his latest mock draft.

“(Quarterback) Drew Brees isn’t going to play forever and (coach) Sean Payton just signed a long-term extension,” Jeremiah wrote. “He needs to start planning for the future and I’m not sure (second-year passer) Garrett Grayson is the answer.”

Saints to Release All-Time Leading Receiver Marques Colston

Marques Colston

ESPN reports that all-time Saints leading wide out Marques Colston is going to get released, ending an era with the team where he was one of the best wide outs in team history.

The Saints will likely release wide receiver Marques Colston, their all-time leading receiver and touchdown-scorer, in the coming days, according to a league source.

Colston, 32, has had a remarkable 10-year career since being drafted in the seventh round out of Hofstra in 2006, compiling 9,759 yards and 72 touchdowns as well as a Super Bowl ring. But he became New Orleans’ No. 3 receiving option last year while missing three games with injuries, and he is due to earn $3.2 million in salary and bonuses this year.

The writing was on the wall last season when the productivity of Colston dropped as he was phased out of the offense and eventually took a back seat to other wide receivers on the roster.

There’s no doubt he’ll get looks from teams that need wide outs, and that he still has value as a vet on a roster with younger receivers.

QB Drew Brees and Safety Jairus Byrd Both Have Contract Guarantees Kick In

Saints quarterback Drew Brees and safety Jairus Byrd, who have two of the biggest contracts on the team, have contract guarantees that kick in Wednesday, the third day of the waiver period, Katherine Terrell of the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports.

Six million of Byrd’s $7.4 million 2016 base salary becomes guaranteed on Wednesday.

The Saints would also be on the hook for the remaining prorated portion of his signing bonus were they to cut him this spring, which would accelerate into this year’s salary cap. Although Byrd was paid his signing bonus upfront, for salary cap purposes, $11.4 million of the bonus remains on the books.

Additionally, $10.85 million of Brees’ $19.75 million 2016 base salary becomes guaranteed on Wednesday. In the long run, that doesn’t mean much, as the Saints have already professed that they expect him to be their quarterback going into next season.

However, the Saints likely will try to find some cap relief with Brees’ contract, which has one year remaining and carries a $30 million hit to the salary cap. The most likely option is an extension which would spread out the money over a few years.

Saints LB Dannell Ellerbe Accepts Pay Cut

Saints linebacker Dannell Ellerbe has accepted a pay cut to stay with the team according to Mike Triplett of ESPN.com.

Ellerbe was scheduled to earn $4.3 million in salary and bonuses and count $5.9 million against the cap this upcoming season. There was no way he was going to stay in New Orleans at that price.

Acquired in a trade with the Miami Dolphins along with a 2015 third-round draft pick last March in exchange for wide receiver Kenny Stills, Ellerbee showed some promise in his first year with the Saints but played in only six games due to injuries. He turned 30 in November and clearly his best football is behind him. Even with the pay cut, it would not be a huge surprise if Ellerbe is not on the 2016 opening game roster.

Loomis Says Brees Will Be Back Under Center for the Saints in 2016

Saints general manager Mickey Loomis promised Thursday that Drew Brees would remain the team’s quarterback, but he didn’t reveal any details of expected offseason contract negotiations, Evan Woodbery of the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports.

Brees is under contract for 2016, but his $30 million hit against the salary cap could be reduced if the contract is extended.

“I know this: Drew’s going to be our quarterback,” Loomis said. “We’ll figure out how we’re going to handle the contract, whether it stays the same and just remains right in place, or whether we do something different. That’s all part of what we’ve got to figure out in the coming weeks.”

Loomis said the Saints’ precarious cap situation doesn’t necessarily require that Brees’ contract be extended.

“I keep reading how we’re in dire straits with the cap and this, that and the other,” Loomis said. “It’s not a great cap situations, but it’s not as dire as sometimes I think it’s painted out to be. We know where we’re at, we know what we have to do.”

Saints vs Falcons NFL Week 17 Inactives

Saints inactives: QB Garrett Grayson, TE RaShaun Allen, DT Kaleb Eulls, OTs Terron Armstead and Andrus Peat, WR Marques Colston and LB Dannell Ellerbe

Falcons inactives: RB Tevin Coleman, DE Malliciah Goodman, OLB Tyler Starr, T Bryce Harris, TE D.J. Tialavea, G Ben Garland, S Robenson Therezie

Saints Fire DC Rob Ryan Following Latest Awful Outing Against Redskins

Earlier in the day on Monday Saints head coach Sean Payton said at that time no changes had been made in the coaching staff.

Little did he know he’d have to change his tune a few hours later.

The Saints have fired defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, this on the heels of allowing a Redskins season high 47 points Sunday in an embarrassing 47-14 loss in D.C.

FOX Sports first reported the news of the Ryan firing, which was a long time coming if you’ve watched much of the Saints and their defense the last two years.

Ryan took over the 4th ranked defense in New Orleans in 2013, and basically trying to make it better along with Payton and the front office have gone nothing but backwards the last two years.

The Saints woke up today with the 32nd ranked defense in the league, allowing 424.7 yards per game, 293 yards through the air per game, and 131 yards per game on the ground.

Some of the players that were brought in to help that clearly haven’t include Jairus Byrd, who inked a six-year, $54 million deal back in 2014 and Brandon Browner, who signed a three-year deal in free agency this year.

In Washington Sunday the Saints allowed 324 yards and four touchdowns to Kirk Cousins, a QB that had not thrown more than one touchdown in any game this season until yesterday.

Sunday the Saints became the first team in NFL history to allow four touchdown passes and no interceptions three weeks in a row (Eli Manning, Marcus Mariota and Cousins).

Awful, and probably overdue for a change, which finally will take place now that it’s the bye week and the team has a chance to take a step back and breathe.