New Orleans Saints general manager Mickey Loomis shared his thoughts Monday on the flurry of additions and subtractions the Saints have made over the past two weeks.
Loomis, who spoke to The Times-Picayune's Larry Holder at the NFL meetings in Orlando, said he is pleased overall with the way the offseason has gone so far. However, he admitted that the team had to make some tough choices -- including the decision to trade running back Darren Sproles to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Among the highlights from Loomis' conversation:
Regarding Sproles, Loomis said: "Anytime you're in a good place and you've had success, which he's had with us, it's definitely painful to have the team say, 'We don't want you anymore.' But I'm not in the business of consulting players on the moves we make in management. … But look, I'm sensitive to how personal these things are to players. I get that. I respect Darren. A lot. He's done a lot for us. When we had the opportunity to trade him, I spoke with his representation a number of times. I wanted to put him in a place where he felt good about going, and yet I've got to consider the team's best interest first."
Loomis also spoke highly of former Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins, who signed with the Eagles as a free agent. But Loomis said the Saints planned to let Jenkins go and try to upgrade with top free-agent safety Jairus Byrd, mainly because they want to create more turnovers. Loomis said Byrd's ball skills made him worth taking their “biggest shot” in free agency.
Loomis said the team was glad things worked out with re-signing right tackle Zach Strief, whom he believes played as well in 2013 as ever.
Moore surprised but understood: Another one of those tough choices for the Saints -- receiver Lance Moore -- said he was surprised when he found out the Saints were looking to trade or release him during a recent interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio. Moore said he actually found out first from ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter's report.
But Moore said he understood why the cap-strapped Saints were making the move to get younger and cheaper. Here's a breakdown of his interview from The Advocate.