Signs point toward Michael Thomas playing for Saints in 2022

Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

The New Orleans Saints’ recent cap-saving moves point to a near certainty for 2022: Michael Thomas is staying in NOLA.

Amid rumors that Thomas would be traded this offseason as part of the Saints’ rebuilding efforts, the organization just gave the most clear indication that the star wideout would indeed play for the Saints for the 2022 season.

Ahead of free agency and the draft, the Saints have begun restructuring contracts to free up cap space, and they recently wrapped up the deals of Michael Thomas along with offensive tackle Ryan Ramczyk.

NOLA reportedly converted around $14.5 million of Thomas’ compensation for 2022 into a signing bonus, which saved a decent amount of cap space as well as solidified Thomas’ spot on the roster this year.

The New Orleans Saints just restructured Michael Thomas’ contract for 2022

Other than Michael Thomas flat-out telling reporters, “I’m staying in New Orleans,” the Saints restructuring Thomas’ contract provides the most clear-cut evidence that Thomas isn’t going anywhere.

As such, the Saints have no intentions of starting from scratch and initiating a full rebuild, as keeping Thomas means the team is focused on fielding a playoff-contending roster and has upgrading the offense as a high priority on its to-do list.

Other receivers returning to the team may include Marquez Callaway and Deonte Harris, and the Saints will likely use a first-round pick on a wideout talent in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Another red-hot priority should be re-signing Jameis Winston before another team poaches the highly coveted pending free agent.

In 2022, NOLA enters one of the most uncertain offseasons in recent history, and plenty of questions still loom around several positions of need. What will NOLA do at tight end? What will become of Marcus Williams and Terron Armstead? Should the Saints be worried about their running back room?

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At least the Michael Thomas question has been answered fairly definitively. One contract done, many, many more to go.