After just two seasons with the New Orleans Saints, the team has chosen to move on from the experiment with tight end Coby Fleener. Just a little more than two years ago, Fleener was signed to a five-year deal by the Saints and he was expected to fill a position that had been a bit of a void since the departure of Jimmy Graham. Now, the team feels as if the relationship has run its course and they have chosen to part ways with the 29-year-old.
According to a report from Pro Football Talk, Fleener has been straight-up released by the New Orleans Saints and will be looking for work elsewhere in the NFL.
It is no surprise that quarterback Drew Brees liked Fleener and wanted him to be a bigger part of the offense, but that simply never happened. Through his first season with the team in 2016, he did haul in 50 receptions for 631 yards and three touchdowns.
Last year proved to be a bit of a let-down, though, and he ended with just 295 yards and two touchdowns on a mere 22 receptions. Fleener did only play in 11 games in 2017 as a concussion forced him to stay on the sidelines for the last month of the season.
Ben Volin of the Boston Globe first reported the move.
Per a league source, Saints have released TE Coby Fleener
— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) May 7, 2018
Saints release Coby Fleener https://t.co/GVIhF726Mp
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) May 7, 2018
It isn’t yet known when the release of Coby Fleener will be designated by the NFL, but the timeframe could end up costing or saving the Saints a lot of money. If it is designated as a post-June 1 cut, the Saints will save about $3 million against the cap for 2018.
Should the release be designated differently, the Saints will lose $8.2 million.
With the lack of production and a few moves made this offseason, the release of Fleener isn’t overly shocking. At the end of March, the New Orleans Saints re-signed Benjamin Watson who played with the Baltimore Ravens last year. Not only was Drew Brees happy to see Watson back in the “Big Easy,” but the fans always loved him as well. With Josh Hill and Michael Hoomanawanui also on the roster, the tight end position is more than situated.