The New Orleans Saints did not end the 2020 season on a high note. A tough loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers was bad enough, but reports of quarterback Drew Brees retiring added to the sting.
We still are unsure if Brees will follow through with his plan to retire. The Saints are still waiting to get the official word from the future Hall of Fame signal-caller, after all. But things are obviously trending in that direction.
Brees dealt with multiple injuries this year, including broken ribs, a collapsed lung and a torn rotator cuff. Constantly having to battle back at the age of 42 can’t be fun, but the decline in performance might actually be the dagger.
Was it the result of the injuries? Only Brees can truly know the answer to that question, but a decision looms regardless.
Liz Roscher with Yahoo Sports recently wrote a piece diving into the situation. She even has quotes from general manager Mickey Loomis discussing the situation with the longtime quarterback. The team will wait as long as they can, of course, but decisions have to be made on their end too.
“We’ve got a lot of other planning to do,” Loomis said, via Yahoo Sports. “There’s more unknowns right now than there are knowns, in the sense that we don’t yet know what the [salary] cap’s going to be next [season].
“Even a narrow range we don’t have yet. So we’ve got a lot of planning to do, we haven’t completed our roster evaluations from last season, so at this point in time, there’s more unknowns than there are knowns.”
The Saints have one of the worst salary cap situations in the league. After years of running credit against future caps, things have finally caught up with them. Big-named players such as Emmanuel Sanders, Janoris Jenkins, Malcom Brown and Latavis Murray might all be on the chopping block.
But not knowing where they stand with a pricy, aging quarterback is something New Orleans needs to get figured out. Of course they would welcome him back if he wanted to continue, but they would then have to make other maneuvers to attack the salary cap issue.
Brees has earned the time to figure some things out, but the Saints can’t wait forever.
Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.