New England Patriots Gronkowski deal is good news for New Orleans Saints tight end Graham

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December 4, 2011; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham (80) flexes following a first down against the Detroit Lions during the second half at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Saints defeated the Lions 31-17. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-US PRESSWIRE

New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski was made a very happy man yesterday with a contract extension and New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham should follow not too far behind.

Gronkowski reportedly signed a contract extension for the Patriots to stay with the team through 2019 and is worth $54 million .  The deal makes him the highest paid tight end in NFL history.

The 2010 second round draft pick will receive an $8 million signing bonus along $13 million guaranteed.  With his new contract, Gronkowski will average close to $6.89 million a season.

You better believe that between the bow fishing and mini-camp, Saints tight end Graham took notice.  After all, Graham was a third round pick in 2010 and has contributed to the team like Gronkowski has to his.

Both players battled for the single season receiving record for a tight end last season and it came down to the wire in the final game of the season for both.

Graham held the record briefly towards the end of their final game against the Carolina Panthers with 1,310 yards which broke Kellen Winslow’s record of 1,290.

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Tags: Bill Belichick Carolina Panthers Drew Brees Jimmy Graham Kellen Winslow Lance Moore Marques Colston Mickey Loomis New England Patriots New Orleans Saints NFL Network Pierre Thomas Rob Gronkowski Sound FX