In case the New Orleans Saints were considering being cheap after they re-sign the 2011 offensive player of the year in quarterback Drew Brees, and offensive lineman Carl Nicks, wide receiver Marques Colston is reminding the franchise quietly that he deserves a big pay day as well.
According to Pro Football Talk, a league source claims that Marques Colston will not be giving the New Orleans Saints a “hometown discount” when it comes to negotiating his second deal to remain with the team.
Colston more than lived up to his rookie deal and deserves a big contract.
In his rookie season he was one of the top receivers in the league with 70 receptions, over 1,000 yards receiving, and eight touchdowns.
The next year he broke the single season franchise reception record (98 catches) and tied the single season franchise touchdown record (11 touchdowns).
He currently holds the NFL record for most receptions in a player’s first two years at 168 catches.
He also has had 1,000 yard receiving seasons 5 out of 6 years that he has been in the league.
Colston deserves a big contract, but it may not be coming from the Saints.
The Saints are still in contract negotiations with quarterback Drew Brees, who fully expects to be Saint for life and be paid like one of the top 3 quarterbacks in the league.
After the Saints secure Brees, I am willing to take a bet that they will work hard to bring back pro bowl guard Carl Nicks over Marques Colston.
Nicks is a very important piece of the Saints offensive line and helps set up all the success that Brees has passing the ball.
This leaves Colston out in the cold and in the free agent market. I doubt the Saints have much money left to give him the big contract that he desires and he seems more than prepared to walk because he knows teams are willing to pay him.
Drew Brees convinced running back Darren Sproles to come to the Saints. Could he convince Colston to stay? Most likely not.
While Brees and Colston both started this offense together, and have the best rapport on the field, I doubt that will be enough to convince him not to want a big contract.
If Colston leaves, will the Saints offense really suffer? While Colston has the best hands on the team, the Saints will be fine.
They have a legitimate vertical threat in tight end Jimmy Graham and wide receiver Lance Moore (in my opinion, the best wide receiver on the team) will need to play more consistently but is also a reliable target.
Deep threat wide receivers Devery Henderson and Robert Meachem will need to step up, and oft-forgotten Adrian Arrington will finally have to prove he belongs.
If you aren’t convinced take a look at the New England Patriots. They have a fantastic offensive line, two great tight ends, wide receiver Wes Welker and an occasional cameo from Chad Ochocinco, and they went all the way to the Super Bowl.
The Saints arguably have more weapons than the New England Patriots, and can invest in another wide receiver come draft day if they believe that to be prudent.
Just like the departure of running back Reggie Bush last year, change isn’t always necessarily a bad thing. Although I will miss calling Colston “The Underrated MC”.