NFC South Update
The New Orleans Saints have released their top pass rusher Junior Galette less than a year into a 4-year $41.5 million extension signed in September of 2014. The Saints’ 2015 offseason has been eventful highlighted by the trade of Pro Bowl tight end Jimmy Graham. The Saints appear to be moving to a more balanced offensive attack but their defense remains their biggest concern. That concern only grows by releasing the team leader in sacks over the pass two seasons (22). Considering the Saints’ defensive deficiencies and Galette’s strong play this clearly wasn’t a move predicated on performance or money for that matter. Despite being named a team captain last season, Galette had reportedly worn out his welcome in the “Big Easy.” Alienating current and former Saints players as well as members of the coaching staff and front office including head coach Sean Payton. With video of a 2013 South Beach Brawl surfacing where Galette allegedly assaults numerous individuals with a belt (his attorney asserts that there is no evidence that it was Galette) and a January arrest due to a domestic dispute the Saints ultimately decided moving on from the pass rusher and incurring $12.1 million in dead money (2016) despite being up against the salary cap was best for the Saints’ locker room dynamic.
There has been no conclusive decision whether or not the NFL will punish Galette but his pass rushing prowess will likely garner the 27-year-old another opportunity in short order. As for the Saints this leaves Anthony Spencer and 2015 second round selection Hau’oli Kikaha as the top outside linebackers on New Orleans’ depth chart.
In other news:
– TE Jermaine Gresham has signed a 1-year deal with the Arizona Cardinals;
– The Minnesota Vikings have agreed to a 1-year deal with CB Josh Thomas;
– QB Josh Freeman has been released by the Miami Dolphins;
– Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle has received deferred adjudication stemming from a shoplifting arrest from last October