How much do the New Orleans Saints miss Mark Ingram?

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The case of Mark Ingram

Mark Ingram
NEW ORLEANS, LA – JANUARY 07: Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints hands the ball of to Mark Ingram #22 of the New Orleans Saints during the second half of the NFC Wild Card playoff game against the Carolina Panthers at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 7, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

In the wake of getting Gillislee, the Saints cut Jonathan Williams, only to sign him to the practice squad. After a few days of practice, Williams was reactivated to the team and Scott was cut, then placed on the practice squad. None of this sounds like a team confident in what it had.

That lack of confidence showed in Week 1 when the Saints only attempted 13 rushes. Yes, the team got behind and needed to pass, but we’d already thrown more than twice as many passes as rushes in the first half (21 pass, 10 rush) and we were only down by a TD. In Week 2 they added 10 more touches, but two weeks’ worth of rushing has netted us only 105 yards. No one saw that tremendous lack of production coming.

Which brings us to the case of Mark Ingram. The Saints declined to extend Mark Ingram’s contract this past off season. Wise move on the surface for several reasons. You have other backs you think can hold down the fort. You have Alvin Kamara, likely the most gifted back ever to put on a Saints uniform. The drug suspension. You have a solid offense without Ingram, so you want to wait and see how the season plays out, injuries and all.

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AND, most importantly, Ingram will be looking for what will likely be his last big payday. He’ll want four years and he’ll want maybe not Todd Gurley/Le’Veon Bell type money, but large money. Probably near $8-9 million a year. He’s currently playing on a four-year $16 million deal, which now looks like a steal for the Saints.