By John Sigler
The New Orleans Saints were blindsided by the retirement of longtime center Max Unger on Saturday. Unger was a cornerstone of the Saints offense since they traded for him in the 2015 offseason, and he had one year left on the contract extension he had previously signed with the team.
He also had a salary cap hit of $8.7 million for the 2019 season. The Saints would have saved $6.95 million of that had they released Unger, but Nick Underhill of the Advocate confirmed that they will recoup that $6.95 million once he is placed on the reserve/retired list.
That’s a windfall for New Orleans, even if they came by it bitterly. The Saints restructured their contract with quarterback Drew Brees just days ago to facilitate contract extensions for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and kicker Wil Lutz, and the signings of free agents Malcom Brown (a nose tackle) and Mario Edwards Jr. (a defensive lineman). Now they have nearly $7 million more to work with as free agency marches on, but it’s safe to say they would rather have Unger.
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