NFL draft insider Tony Pauline reports the Saints "will consider trading up" if they "feel they are in striking distance" of Clemson DE/OLB Vic Beasley.
Per Pauline, Saints DC Rob Ryan "loves Beasley's pass rushing ability and potential in a 3-4 (defense)." New Orleans didn't run as many 3-4 looks as hoped last year, in large part due to a shortage of outside pass rushers. Beasley is the most explosive speed rusher in this year's draft. With two first-rounders and five selections in the top 80, the Saints have ample trade-up ammo.
Free agent Greg Jennings left his Saints visit without a contract.
It'll be his last visit, according to the New Orleans Advocate's Nick Underhill. In addition to the Saints, the Ravens, Panthers, and Jaguars remain interested in Jennings. He also visited the Dolphins after his release from the Vikings. Jennings isn't going to get more than about $3 million on a one-year contract.
Coach Sean Payton said it's important for the Saints to draft some defenders who can play "right away."
Saints ace beat writer Larry Holder released a mock draft Thursday that has New Orleans selecting Kentucky linebacker Bud Dupree and UCLA ILB Eric Kendricks with the Nos. 13 and 31 picks in two weeks. Dupree's stock has steadily been on the rise, and he has a chance to be a top-10 pick. Kendricks is the brother of Eagles ILB Mychal Kendricks. Eric is viewed as the top inside linebacker prospect in what appears to be a weak draft class at the position.
Free agent DL Corey Wootton left his visit with the Saints without a contract.
Wootton has struggled to attract interest after playing a limited role in Mike Zimmer’s defense last season. He also left visits from Tennessee and Jacksonville without a deal. 27-year-old Wootton offers versatility at multiple spots, but will likely have to settle for the veteran minimum.
Free agent DE Corey Wootton is visiting the Saints on Wednesday.
Wootton played 275 snaps for coach Mike Zimmer's Vikings last season on a one-year, $1.5 million deal. He'll come much cheaper after a miserable year.
Free agent WR Greg Jennings is expected to visit the Saints.
At least per NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, that was "the plan" following Jennings' Monday visit with the Jaguars. A deal with the Jags does not appear imminent. The Saints are down a man at receiver after trading away Kenny Stills, but it's unlikely they'd view a 31-year-old Jennings as his sole replacement.
Free agent OLB/DE Anthony Spencer is visiting the Saints Tuesday.
The Saints are trying to rebuild their identity around ball control and defense. By shedding salary in the Jimmy Graham deal, they've freed up some money to take shots on talented defenders like Spencer. Prior to 2013 microfracture surgery, Spencer busted out for 11 sacks for Dallas in 2012 -- and he did it under Rob Ryan, now the Saints defensive coordinator.
Chargers signed CB Patrick Robinson, formerly of the Saints, to a one-year, $2 million contract.
Robinson has had a wildly up-and-down career, getting benched repeatedly in New Orleans but also flashing the ability that made him the No. 32 overall pick in 2010. Robinson is currently coming off his best season and going on age 28. In San Diego, Robinson will compete for sub-package snaps at outside corner. Jason Verrett and Brandon Flowers are the starters, while new S/CB Jimmy Wilson has experience covering the slot.
Patriots agreed to terms with RB Travaris Cadet, formerly of the Saints, on a two-year contract.
A restricted free agent, Cadet wasn't tendered a contract by the Saints. A pure passing-game back, he gives the Patriots a third-down option as they look to replace Shane Vereen. Cadet caught 38 passes for the Saints last season despite playing just 209 snaps. He has only 11 career carries. Cadet is a name to keep an eye on in fantasy circles, but will face competition for Vereen's old spot.
Free agent CB Patrick Robinson hasn't ruled out re-signing with the Saints.
Robinson is scheduled to meet with Pittsburgh this weekend, and has multiple visits lined up. The Saints are unlikely to bring him back after signing Brandon Browner. Robinson is the top remaining free-agent corner behind Tramon Williams.
Saints released CB Corey White.
White lost his starting corner spot to Terrance Frederick late last season and only played sporadically after that. He's inconsistent, but some team is likely to take a chance on White because of his versatility. In addition to playing outside corner, White has also spent time at nickel back and safety.
Dolphins acquired WR Kenny Stills from the Saints in exchange for LB Dannell Ellerbe and a 2015 third-round pick.
We're not sure what the Saints are thinking here. Stills is a soon-to-be 23-year-old playmaker with two years left on his contract at minimum salary. It's a great get for the Dolphins, who were going to cut Ellerbe and his inflated salary anyway. Stills isn't just a deep threat, either; he was fourth in the league among receivers with his 78.8 percent catch rate last season. Acquiring Stills may mean the end is near for Mike Wallace in Miami.
Lions signed DT Tyrunn Walker, formerly of the Saints, to a one-year contract.
Walker wasn't tendered by the Saints as a restricted free agent and is going to a team that should allow him more opportunities. Across 306 snaps last season, 25-year-old Walker earned positive marks as a pass rusher and in run defense.
The Miami Herald reports the Dolphins have contacted the Eagles about OG Evan Mathis.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports the Rams are also believed to be in the running. Both teams have gaping holes at guard, so it's not a surprise. CBS' Jason La Canfora reports the Bills, Vikings and "possibly even Saints" are also "sniffing around" on one of the league's premier guards.
The Saints are close to signing former Patriots CB Brandon Browner.
A source told Profootballtalk the deal is "almost finished." The Saints were also showing interest in former Packer Tramon Williams, though that ship has likely sailed now that Browner is a John Hancock away from joining the team. The Patriots made almost no effort to retain him, perhaps because of Browner's penchant for getting flagged. Browner also got beat several times on deep balls last season, though his tight coverage on Jermaine Kearse helped Malcolm Butler catch the game-winning interception in last month's Super Bowl. He's one of the biggest corners in the league at 6'4" and 221 pounds.
Chiefs acquired LG Ben Grubbs from the Saints in exchange for a 2015 fifth-round pick.
It's wheeling and dealing season. Grubbs was in danger of getting cut by the Saints due to his insanely-high $9.6 million cap number as he enters year four of a five-year, $36 million deal. The Chiefs have lost a ton of offensive linemen in free agency the past two years. Grubbs, a two-time Pro Bowler, will solidify it. He hasn't missed a start in three seasons as one of the league's better guards.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports the Saints are offering free agent CB Brandon Browner more than $5 million per year.
With Patrick Robinson a free agent, Keenan Lewis coming off an injury-plagued down season, and 2014 second-rounder Stanley Jean-Baptiste playing just eight snaps as a rookie, the Saints are desperate for corner help. Browner is expected to have a hot market as he attempts to land one more big contract.
ESPN 980 Washington reports free agent Brandon Browner plans to visit the Redskins.
Browner visited the Saints on Wednesday. It's unclear if he's left town without a deal, or when he would visit Washington.
The Saints will host free agent C.J. Spiller on Thursday.
This is an exciting potential pairing; Spiller's explosive lateral agility and straight-line speed would be fun to watch at the Superdome. Spiller has roots down south, having played college football at Clemson. The Saints are transitioning to a balanced-to-run-heavy offense, having re-signed Mark Ingram, traded for C Max Unger, and dealt Jimmy Graham. Spiller would be the 1B to Ingram's 1A, likely seeing around 8-14 touches per game in New Orleans.
NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reports the Saints are "in the mix" for free agent C.J. Spiller.
Per Rapsheet, the Cowboys "lurk as well." New Orleans would be an intriguing landing spot, as the Saints need a proven pass-catching back after releasing Pierre Thomas. Spiller would help replace some of the playmaking ability that went out the door when the Saints shipped Jimmy Graham to Seattle. It's hard to see Dallas being a serious contender unless DeMarco Murray actually walks.