The NFL Network is reporting that an arbitrator deemed Jimmy Graham a tight end, a ruling that will save the Saints millions while threatening to further estrange their working relationship.
Graham hoped the arbitrator would side with his case because he spent more time last season out wide and in the slot than at the line of scrimmage, the traditional spot for tight ends.
Graham, who is entering his fifth NFL season, missed all offseason activities. Without him, veteran Benjamin Watson and second-year pro Josh Hill handled duties at tight end.
Last season, Graham caught 86 passes for 1,215 yards and 16 touchdowns during the regular season, but his campaign was tarnished by a one-catch, eight-yard performance at Seattle in an NFC divisional playoff loss. After the game, Seahawks defenders questioned his ability to be physical.