For the first time in what feels like a long time, the Saints appear to be looking towards the future.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Thursday that, according to his sources, the team is open to trading running backs Pierre Thomas and Darren Sproles as well as receiver Lance Moore.
Two of those pieces were integral parts to the Saints’ Super Bowl run in 2009. The other was integral in the franchise’s record-setting offensive unit in 2011.
All three, though, could carry value to other teams all while helping the Saints.
Combined, the three are set to cost the Saints a bit more than $12 million against the cap this season.
The moves would likely net the Saints future picks, helping the team not only get younger, but shed cap issues as New Orleans does so.
With Jimmy Graham’s franchise tag figured into the equation, the Saints are coming close to the salary cap, even with the higher than expected ceiling.
The Saints still also have to have room for free agents as well as draft picks.
Not that any of this should be surprising.
Rosters change, never staying the same from season to season.
Moore’s role was greatly reduced this past season and his frustration could be heard in listening to his comments by the end of the campaign.
Sproles didn’t appear to be the mismatch he used to be, maybe having lost a step with age and injury.
Both, however, still have enough life in their bodies that they could find themselves utilized on other teams.
Thomas, meanwhile, carries just a $2.9 million cap number into 2014.Though he ended the season sideline with a chest injury, he was still the team’s most consistent running back throughout the season.
But with both Khiry Robinson and Mark Ingram carrying the load in the postseason – and doing so well – it would seem the Saints are ready to make them the future backfield.