The Saints are flying high after their big win over the Rams, but the front office is still looking to sign Dez Bryant to strengthen their receiving corps.
Drew Brees and the Saints haven’t struggled to score points this season, but that doesn’t mean their offense is perfect. The team is interested in signing Dez Bryant to give their star quarterback more options in the passing game.
Tom Pelissero of NFL Network is reporting that “two sides are in negotiations on a deal.” He’s careful to say that nothing’s been agreed upon as of yet, but there is momentum towards the two sides coming to an agreement. Remember, Bryant flirted with the Browns very publicly in the preseason but the two sides never came to an agreement.
Presumably, Bryant isn’t asking for nearly as much money at this point in the season. The Saints may represent his last real opportunity to catch on with a team this season. Signing with a Super Bowl contender represents a really good opportunity for Bryant to reestablish his NFL value.
Saints fans shouldn’t expect to see Bryant come in and drastically change Sean Payton’s offense. Assuming he signs, he’s not going to cut into Michael Thomas or Tre’Quan Smith’s workload. Instead, look for Bryant to take a few targets away from Austin Carr in the slot and Benjamin Watson at tight end.
Interestingly, Watson is the guy who would likely lose the most snaps to Bryant. The former Cowboys star lacks the speed to gain separation on the outside at this point in his career, but he has the size to make plays down the seam and in the red zone.
While Bryant is pretty slow for a wide receiver, he still possesses above-average speed for a tight end. He’s much faster than Watson. That means Payton can line him up as a jumbo receiver in the slot to create mismatches against linebackers and safeties.
In the end, potentially signing Bryant will allow the Saints to show opposing defenses some different looks down the stretch. He’s not coming in to be a focal point of the offense. Instead, he’s just one more thing for defensive coordinators to scheme against. That might be enough to turn the Saints’ Super Bowl dreams into a reality.