<
>

Leaving Patriots for Saints simply business for Brandon Browner

31m

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. -- New Orleans Saints cornerback Brandon Browner offered a simple business lesson when asked if he was disappointed the New England Patriots decided to let him go this offseason.

"This is a business, man. I wasn't disappointed at all," Browner said. "When they asked me to take a pay cut, you know, it was time to get up out of there."

Browner, who speaks in a deep monotone that fits his imposing nature, almost cracked a smile as his line drew laughs from the media crowd. But he kept his poker face intact.

Browner has said in the past that he had no hard feelings after spending one season in New England and winning a Super Bowl with the Patriots. Browner recently shared a photo of his Super Bowl ring and a complimentary handwritten note sent to him by Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

The Patriots decided to let Browner go before he was due a $2 million roster bonus, wiping his full salary-cap figure of $4.8 million off the books.

Brandon wasn't out of work for long, though. The Saints quickly signed him to a three-year, $15 million contract, making him one of their top free-agent priorities.

The 6-foot-4, 225-pound press-coverage specialist has filled two glaring needs for the Saints. They needed a dependable No. 2 cornerback and needed a strong veteran leader in the locker room -- a role Browner has quickly embraced.

"I just try to be myself. I've played with two championship defenses, so I know what it looks like to be on a good defense," said Browner, who won a Super Bowl with the Seattle Seahawks the year before he won one in New England. "Talk to the guys when need be, try to be a leader as much as I can. We have a lot of talent back there (in the secondary). I can help them grow, and they can help me grow too."

Browner, who turns 31 on Sunday, said there's nowhere he'd rather celebrate than on the football field.

"This is a celebration for me," Browner said. "Since I was a child, my birthday always fell during football season. So as a kid, that's all I wanted was for my mom to sign me up to play football.

"So I continue to keep that attitude, enjoy myself, party on the football field tomorrow."