SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 14: Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints watch from the sidelines during the second quarter of the NFC Divisional playoff game against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park on January 14, 2012 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Talks between the New Orleans Saints and quarterback Drew Brees is keeping the quarterback optimistic enough that a deal will get done "soon", reports Mike Triplett with The Times-Picayune. If the Saints are unable to get a deal done soon, then New Orleans will be faced with some difficult decisions. The deadline for teams to apply the franchise tag is March 5, with the start of free agency kicking off at 4:00 p.m. ET on March 13.
If both sides agree to terms before the March 5 deadline, the Saints are bound to use their franchise tag on another of their high-profile unrestricted free agents like offensive guard Carl Nicks or wide receiver Marques Colston, players that the Bengals could target during free agent to address needs on their own roster.
When asked if he is worried that the two sides might still be "very far apart" in their philosophies on a new deal, however, Brees said no.
"I wouldn't say we're 'very far' apart. I think there's been progress made," Brees said. "But just like everything it's a process. It takes time. It's not something that happens overnight."