Jimmy Graham, Saints reach new four-year deal

The New Orleans Saints and tight end Jimmy Graham got a new deal done before Tuesday’s deadline for franchise-tagged players.

ESPN reported that a source with knowledge of the deal said that Graham’s new contract is worth an estimated $40 million for four years, with $21 million guaranteed. That amount would make him the highest-paid tight end in the league.

The yearly salary ranks him seventh among current wide receivers, according to the Times-Picayune.

He tweeted his excitement after the deal was reached Tuesday morning.

Graham was previously given a tight-end tag with a base salary of $7 million. However, the 27-year-old was seeking a wide-receiver tag of $12 million based on his production with the team. Last month though, an arbitrator upheld the $7 million tag.

The Saints needed to get a deal done with the Pro-Bowler. He has been one of the most explosive playmakers in the team’s offense and one the best tight ends in the NFL.

For his career, Graham has 41 touchdowns and 3,863 receiving yards.

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