New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees took to the air on Wednesday. Instead of tossing a football, however, Brees used the airways of the WWL-AM radio station in New Orleans to express his disappointment with the Saints organization for not making his long-term contact a priority.
"It's extremely frustrating for me, but here we are," Brees said about the lack of a long-term deal being in place. Brees went on to say that he is "certainly committed to getting a long-term deal, as I have been throughout this entire process."
While Brees is pointing his finger at the Saints with his words, the Saints have their actions to back their position.
In 2011, General Manager Mickey Loomis and the Saints organization offered to make Brees the richest man in the NFL. The Saints put together a deal that would have made him the highest player in the league. Brees declined. And now he's claiming that he is committed to securing a long-term deal.
His commitment to the game cannot be challenged, but his commitment to the contract process very well can.
Had the Saints not offered Brees a long-term deal in 2011, then Brees' words would carry significant weight. With him having turned down a substantial offer, he is beginning to simply look greedy and, in turn, lose favor with his fans.
Yahoo! Sports has reported that Brees and the Saints are about $5 million per year apart on a long-term deal. Brees is seeking $23 million per season, while the Saints hold his value at around $18 million per season.
To put Brees' demands in context, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady recently restructured his contract and will earn just at 11.7 million in 2012, and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers will take home $8 million in 2012. Brees is asking that his bank account be larger than both Brady and Rodgers combined for next season.
Not only is Brees seeking to make more money than Brady and Rodgers combined, he's 'disappointed' the Saints have made him wait this long.
While it's true that Brees became the most prolific single-season passer (5,476 yards) since they began wrapping up the pigskin with laces, his demands are unjustified. At least his 'disappointment' in the Saints organization is misplaced.
"I would say, more than anything, I guess, what's been a little frustrating on my end or disappointing is the lack of communication," Brees said. "I would just say there should be a sense of urgency and yet it seems like there's not," Brees added.
The Saints have had other urgent matters to attend to this offseason other than Brees' long-term contract.
In what now looks like genius moves, the Saints signed linebackers David Hawthorne and Curtis Lofton. These signings will allow the Saints defense to move on seamlessly from Jonathan Vilma's season-long suspension. The Saints also signed offensive lineman Ben Grubbs to replace Carl Nicks. These three free-agent signings were essential to holding the dominant black and old gold fabric of the Saints together.
So while Brees is frustrated with the lack of communication now, the Saints communicated with Brees in 2011 just fine. It was Brees who lacked a sense of urgency. Now it's time for Brees to wait patiently while the Saints figure out things with their salary cap on.