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New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Jimmy Graham's contract has been a non-story this summer. And that's a huge credit to Jimmy Graham. The Saints' star tight end could have made a strong case for holding out of training camp and demanding a new contract. He's ...

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Old 07-27-2013, 12:21 PM   #1
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Jimmy Graham's contract has been a non-story this summer. And that's a huge credit to Jimmy Graham.

The Saints' star tight end could have made a strong case for holding out of training camp and demanding a new contract. He's scheduled to make $1.323 million in the final year of his rookie deal, when his market value is probably closer to $10 million per year.

But Graham said that's just not his way -- which, ironically, is one of many things about him that makes him worth that kind of money.

"You know, it's to each his own," Graham said when asked about other NFL players who choose to hold out in similar situations. "I'm the type of player that it's just about football for me.

"You know, I just want to play, man. It's as simple as that."

Later, Graham added, "All I know is after the season we had last year, and now that we're back, I just want to be a part of it. So I'm gonna be here and I'm gonna play with everything I have no matter what."

Good for Graham, and good for his agent Jimmy Sexton, for not forcing the looming contract standoff to become a distraction this summer while the Saints are reveling in their return to normalcy.

Naturally, Saints general manager Mickey Loomis said Thursday night that he is "absolutely" pleased with how Graham has approached his contract situation so far.

In a perfect world, all these good vibes would continue with the Saints and Graham agreeing to a new megadeal long before the contract talks start to get contentious around next February or March, when a debate over the franchise tag could come into play.

But if we didn't know it already, we certainly learned with quarterback Drew Brees' deal last summer that no player is immune from a good old-fashioned contract standoff.

And Graham's deal could be even more complicated since his market value is harder to gauge as the best of a new breed of dynamic receiving tight ends.

Graham deserves to become the richest tight end in NFL history, surpassing the six-year, $54 million extension signed by the New England Patriots' Rob Gronkowski last year.

Gronkowski's deal isn't a perfect comparison. It arguably included a discount, since Gronkowski was just two years into his rookie deal when he signed it. And it also included an opportunity for the Patriots to opt out of the final four years (a realistic possibility because of his injury issues).

Regardless, that $9 million per year should represent a floor for Graham's value, especially since Graham has been more durable.

But how much more is Graham worth? Will a nice, round figure like six years, $60 million get it done?

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Old 07-27-2013, 12:41 PM   #2
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

Not this season he doesn't.
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Old 07-27-2013, 04:51 PM   #3
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

Its criminal how much they pay these guys.
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Old 07-28-2013, 10:20 AM   #4
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

This guy is a class act and deserves every dollar he gets, hope he doesn't get hurt. How many guys would be in camp with no future contract, I personally haven't seen or herd of one yet. Pay the man he's earned it with his play and character.
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:17 AM   #5
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

He's top 5, but highest paid in NFL history? No way.
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:38 AM   #6
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

Originally Posted by Danno View Post
He's top 5, but highest paid in NFL history? No way.
Highest paid requires consistently best TE in the NFL, or MVP on a team.
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:40 AM   #7
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

Let's talk... next year.
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Old 07-28-2013, 12:23 PM   #8
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

Rob Gronkowski is the highest paid TE as of now; 6 years 54 million. I can't see how we could have the cap with Drews cap hit to make Graham the highest paid TE
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Old 07-28-2013, 01:24 PM   #9
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

I hope Brees comes off something to keep Graham next year. He needs to eliminate those drops now that hes healthy though.
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Old 07-28-2013, 01:50 PM   #10
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Re: New Orleans Saints' Jimmy Graham deserves to be highest paid tight end in NFL

TE is the most recent position in the nfl to run a muck and looks to be a big pay day for him. were the money will come from to keep him i have no idea
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