The Saints come marching in and Jimmy Graham marches in with mega money. The Saints locked in Graham to a four-year, $40 million deal with $21 million guaranteed, making him the highest paid tight end in the league. Graham dominated in the passing game last season for the Saints totaling 86 receptions for 1,215 yards and 16 touchdowns.
The Saints rival, the Atlanta Falcons top-passing man, Roddy White (who posted six consecutive seasons of at least 1,000 receiving yards from 2007-2012) is expected to receive an extension at some point, and there have been talks of getting a deal done before training camp starts July 25.
Extending his contract this early wouldn’t hurt and it would save some cap space not to mention a lot of unnecessary drama as everyone knows White is not shy when it comes to expressing his opinions.
On the other hand, the Falcons could wait to for the extension. It would be smart for the them to hold their fire or more so their pens and see if White produces this year, at least for the first half of the season.
White is 32-years-old and has battled a few injuries last season. He did well over the last four games of 2013 with 38 receptions for 449 yards and two touchdowns, and is expected to be relied upon heavily this season assuming his is 100% healthy. If White stays healthy and puts up big numbers, it would be ideal to rework contract negotiations, maybe extending him to play another 2-3 years; however, big numbers doesn’t necessarily go for big bucks for White.
As mentioned, White is 32 and going on 33 years of age. He’s not coming off a Pro Bowl year and has battled injuries. He’s not like the Calvin Johnsons, the Dez Bryants or the A.J. Greens of the WR bunch that deserve mega millions. Six to eight million a year would be ideal, and even eight million wouldn’t be unreasonable if he does have a good year, but anything more than $10 million would be excessive.
A healthy Julio Jones would more than likely be the favorite target of the opposing defenses this year, which would give White more opportunities to prove he’s still got it; But if White doesn’t do well and gets hurt again, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Falcons let him go.