Saints will have to replace Fujita

March, 7, 2010
3/07/10
5:14
PM ET
The New Orleans Saints have just been hit with their first key loss from their Super Bowl team. The Cleveland Browns announced they have signed free-agent linebacker Scott Fujita.

I don’t know contract details yet, but it’s safe to say the Browns paid more than the Saints were willing to for Fujita. There seemed to be mutual interest in Fujita returning to the Saints, but only at a reasonable price.

Fujita will turn 31 in April and he dealt with some injury problems last season. Although there is no automatic replacement in place, the Saints have some options in young linebackers Marvin Mitchell, Jonathan Casillas and Troy Evans. All got a fair amount of playing time last season.

The Saints also drafted Stanley Arnoux last year, but he was injured in minicamp and missed the entire season. Arnoux is expected to return this year and could be a factor.

But it remains very possible the Saints could use one of their early draft picks to find a potential replacement for Fujita.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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