Drew deal: Contract makes sense (and cents) for both sides

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JANUARY 14: Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints looks to pass against the Minnesota Vikings during the first half of the NFC Divisional Playoff game at U.S. Bank Stadium on January 14, 2018 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

NEW ORLEANS — The two-year deal struck between the Saints and Drew Brees make sense for both sides.

Brees, who turns 40 in January, gets $27 million guaranteed.

And the club now has the biggest piece of their free agent puzzle wrapped up.

The Saints can now turn their attention to filling some needs.

In the past few days, reports have the Saints interested in bringing back tight end Jimmy Graham, signing free agent cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, and showing interest in defensive tackle Muhammad Wilkerson.

The Saints will likely employ the same strategy that worked for the club in 2017. That is, let the initial free agent wave pass, then bargain hunt.

They may not be able to do that with Graham, who has gotten interest from the Green Bay Packers.

The pressure is on every contender in the NFC to improve significantly this offseason.

The Minnesota Vikings were closing in on a deal with free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins that included $86 million guaranteed.

The Super Bowl champion Eagles get starting quarterback Carson Wentz, back from injury.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers returns healthy for Green Bay.

The 49ers are dramatically improved.

And now the Saints have Drew Brees under contract for two more years.

With Brees, the Super Bowl is within reach.

Without him, they would go to the back of the line in the ultra-competitive NFC.