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Drew Brees' contract talks could determine the state of the Saints' defense

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Since joining the New Orleans Saints in 2006 from the San Diego Chargers, Drew Brees has taken the franchise to new heights, most notably helping the team win it's first ever Super Bowl in history back in the 2009 season.

The Saints have only been to the playoffs three times since that famous season, but that's hardly the fault of Brees, as he has established himself as one of the best quarterbacks in the league, consistently throwing for close to 5,000 passing yards and at least 30 touchdowns each season.

It comes as no surprise that the NFC South franchise wants to extend the 37-year-old's contract, which expires at the end of the 2016 season. His agent, Tom Condon, was a guest on the Rich Eisen Show this week, according to Pro Football Talk, and said that talks are expected to take place at some point soon.


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He said: “The club had the right to renegotiate for cap purposes during the life of the contract and has done that, which pushed the cap number to $30 million this year. That’s where it stands right now. I’m guessing that we’ll probably have some conversations with the Saints in the next couple weeks or so.”

The Saints will be doing everything they can to try and lower Brees' cap hit from $30 million to something more sustainable, and with a team that has a poor defense like their's, it is vital they do so in order to have a fighting chance in a highly competitive NFC South.

A 7-9 record isn't good enough for a side that is looking for their first postseason appearance since 2013. It's good that they've managed to keep both head coach Sean Payton and their quarterback on the team, but vast improvement is needed on defense if they want to get back into the playoff hunt.

They were in the bottom two for average points conceded per game (29.8 - 32nd), average yards conceded per game (413.4 - 31st), average passing yards conceded per game (284 - 31st), and average rushing yards conceded per game (129.4 - 31st) in 2015.

The dismissal of Rob Ryan as defensive coordinator was a good start to implementing change, but there is still a long way to go. They're certainly nowhere near the levels the team was back in 2013 when they were only conceding 305.7 yards and 19 points on average per game.

With only a cap space of roughly $8.9 million before free agency, major changes need to be made to some player's contracts. Condon thinks the Saints can live with Brees' $30 million cap hit this season and just make roster changes elsewhere, but with the defense in the shape that it already is, it will be a tough task.

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Drew Brees
New Orleans Saints
Sean Payton

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