The New Orleans Saints have re-signed restricted free agent running back Chris Ivory despite the fact Ivory had visited with the New York Jets.
The official New Orleans Saints Twitter account was the first to break the news of the Chris Ivory signing:
— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) April 19, 2013
General Manager Mickey Loomis announced the move today, meaning that Ivory will at least be with the team for one more season before hitting the market again next year.
What It Means:
It’s an interesting choice by the Saints to bring back Ivory. The team could have received compensation in the form of draft picks had he signed an offer sheet with the Jets. That, or the Saints could have traded him to the Jets for a lesser pick.
Either way, it’s no secret the Saints need draft picks thanks to Bountygate. Giving up a running back who currently sits fourth on the depth chart behind Darren Sproles, Mark Ingram and Pierre Thomas is a questionable move at best.
Ivory has been promising during his four years with the team, but he has been unable to stay healthy. Furthermore, he struggles when catching passes out of the backfield, which makes him an odd fit in New Orleans with the Saints pass-heavy attack led by quarterback Drew Brees.
It seems the Saints are intent on keeping Ivory around—for the time being. There’s no questioning he is a talented back, so the move could pay off in the future. For now, it’s a decision that is sure to split the fanbase.