AFR: Happy ending for Saints, Graham

It was only a brief separation, never did it come close to a divorce. After a four year, $40 million contract, the Saints and Jimmy Graham are happily married once again.

For the Saints, they have their second best player happy and, more importantly, they did it on their terms. The Saints were always willing to make Graham the highest paid tight end in the game and that's exactly what they did.

But by paying Graham $10 million a season with $21 million guaranteed, they also put him in the top-seven in all wide receiver categories. Despite what the NFLPA wanted all of us to believe, that's a very fair gauge of Graham's unique skill set.

Graham and his camp knew it, that's why they settled on that number.

But by no means did Graham lose in this negotiation. For starters,  he gets all his guaranteed money in the first two years.

But his biggest victory came with the length of the deal. Absolutely nothing surprised me about the breakdown of Graham's contract, except that it's just four years long. On that timetable,  he has a legitimate chance to see every penny of his contract, a rarity in the NFL. Plus, he'll only be 31 when its done, giving him a great opportunity to cash in big again in 2018. Most non-quarterbacks get one big-time deal in their careers, Graham has a chance to get two.

Not bad for a guy who was the best bargain on the Saints, and maybe even the entire NFL since he entered the league in 2010.

So now the Jimmy Graham/Saints offseason saga has come to a close with a happy ending.

All that's left is for Graham to rejoin his teammates and show he was a worthwhile investment.

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