The Saints have terminated the contract of veteran tight end David Thomas and waived cornerback Johnny Patrick, a move that will save the team more than $2 million against the salary cap.
“This was an extremely difficult decision to make with David today,” Saints General Manager Mickey Loomis said in a release announcing the moves. “Since he came here in 2009, he’s been an important part of our team, both with his performance on the field and with the outstanding veteran leadership he’s provided for us.”
Thomas came to the Saints in a trade with the Patriots in 2009. He played in 48 games with New Orleans and caught 81 passes for 677 yards and seven touchdowns.
The move, however, leaves New Orleans with just two tight ends on the roster - Jimmy Graham and Michael Higgins. Only Graham has an accrued season of experience among the two.
Patrick, meanwhile, departs after just two seasons. The Saints' third-round selection in 2011, he played in 24 games and had just 29 tackles.
Prior to the moves, New Orleans sat nearly $17 million above the expected 2013 cap of $121.1 million. New Orleans already restructured the contract of linebacker Curtis Lofton, saving the team nearly $4 million this year on his cap figure.