The New Orleans Saints have released running back Darren Sproles, according to Larry Holder of The Times-Picayune. Sproles posted to his Twitter account, thanking New Orleans for his time there and saying that he will always be grateful.
SB Nation NFL
SB Nation NFL
Sproles, who spent three seasons with the Saints after playing the first five years of his career with the Chargers, had at least 70 catches in every season with New Orleans. He wasn't much of a factor in the running game over the last few seasons, but his production out of the backfield has more than made up for it. Drew Brees used Sproles as a safety net time and time again.
New Orleans was reportedly trying to trade Sproles but couldn't find any suitors. Instead, the Saints were forced to cut the running back, who was set to have a cap hit of $3.5 million in 2014. With the Saints trying to bring back tight end Jimmy Graham for big money, they are trying to clear as much cap space as they can. Graham isn't thrilled with the measures the Saints have taken to keep him in town this offseason, though.
Wow unbelievable. Shocked and disappointed on everything that's gone on this offseason.— Jimmy Graham (@TheJimmyGraham) March 8, 2014
Sproles may not be as explosive as he once was, but teams will certainly be interested in adding such a unique weapon to their offense. If he can stay healthy, Sproles should have another couple of productive seasons left in the tank. The running back market just became that much more interesting.