METAIRIE, La. ― When the Saints cut defensive end Bobby McCray earlier this summer, the expectations were that his time in New Orleans was finished.
A month later, McCray is back in the fold with the Saints.
But according to General Manager Mickey Loomis, that wasn’t the original plan.
“I didn’t necessarily anticipate bringing him back when we terminated his contract,” Loomis said. “But some things happened during the course of the last 30 days. I think it made sense for us towards the end. It wasn’t a plan when we terminated him to bring him back.”
Playing the season with a lingering back problem, McCray finished the year with 22 tackles and only 1½ sacks. He’ll be remembered, however, for hits on Arizona’s Kurt Warner and Minnesota’s Brett Favre in the playoffs that hampered both quarterbacks by the end of the game.
Regardless, the Saints cut ties with the defensive end before he was due a roster bonus of more than $2 million.
As for the conversation between McCray and New Orleans’ top officials, it’s being kept private for now save for Loomis saying “We set some expectations. I think I’ll leave it at that.”
Head Coach Sean Payton said the return of McCray didn’t have anything to do with an injury to another defensive end, but rather an understanding between the two parties involved.
“It wasn’t because something happened,” Payton said. “It was just having a chance to spend more time with Bobby.”