New Orleans Saints

Report: Saints expected to bring guard Jahri Evans back into the fold

Jahri Evans blocks for Drew Brees during game against Atlanta. Evans was resigned by the Saints.
Jahri Evans blocks for Drew Brees during game against Atlanta. Evans was resigned by the Saints.

The New Orleans Saints have turned to an old friend to solidify an offensive line interior that has been shaky throughout the preseason.

One of the best offensive linemen in Saints history is back in black and gold, according to a report from The New Orleans Advocate.

New Orleans re-signed guard Jahri Evans on Wednesday, according to a report by the NFL Network, nearly seven months to the day after releasing the Saints legend the day after the Super Bowl in a salary-cap move that saved the team $3.1 million at the time.

“We had a good visit,” Saints coach Sean Payton said.

The Saints have been concerned about their replacement plan for Evans this summer. New Orleans did not add a guard in free agency or the draft, in part because the right fit of player and cost never matched.

Without new blood on the interior, the Saints were expected to start 2015 top pick Andrus Peat on the left side and the winner of a training-camp battle between incumbents Tim Lelito and Senio Kelemete on the right side.

At least unless a better option became available. New Orleans reportedly made a play for the services of former Green Bay guard Josh Sitton, who signed with the Chicago Bears earlier this week after the Packers shocked the NFL by cutting the All-Pro.

Then the Saints turned to a familiar face.

Evans, who played in 11 games last season due to knee and ankle injuries that limited his effectiveness, had spent training camp with the Seattle Seahawks, but he was unable to win a starting job in Seattle and found himself released in the final round of cuts.

"His preseason in Seattle was, we thought, pretty good," Payton said. "He’s in good shape, he knows our system.”

In other Saints news, the team released 2015 third-round draft choice Garrett Grayson.

“I would like to see him further along at this point than he is,” Payton said.

With Grayson gone, that leaves Brees as starter wtih veteran Luke McCown as the backup going into the season opener against the Oakland Raiders this weekend.