The single best source of Chargers information — the San Diego Union-Tribune's Kevin Acee — has struck again, reporting that the Saints have reached an agreement with Darren Sproles. It was pretty much common knowledge to most fans around here that Chargers RB Darren Sproles, after being tagged with the team's franchise tag for the last two years, was going to be to be allowed to walk away this year.
Sproles became a fan favorite over the course of his six-year Chargers career. Standing at a mere 5'6" tall, he seemed like the little engine that could, and he garnered many fans. However, around here he certainly had his detractors. Whether it was people feeling he was overpaid for his level of contributions, or he didn't seem to make the best decisions on kickoffs and punts, fans around here had their issues with him.
Well, none of that matters anymore, as Kevin Acee is reporting that Darren Sproles has decided to sign a four-year contract with the New Orleans Saints, reuniting him with Saints QB Drew Brees. His new contract has him set to earn $14 million, with $6 million guaranteed. Acee also reports that the Chargers could have kept Sproles for less than they paid him the last two seasons, but the contract they offered him was a bit too low for his liking.
Sproles will presumably take over many of the duties of the recently–departed Reggie Bush. It's also been reported that Sproles worked extensively with Drew Brees during the off-season, making this decision less and less of a surprise.
Sproles joins a Saints backfield that also includes starter Pierre Thomas and 2011 first-round draft choice Mark Ingram. Sproles had a career year last year, catching a career-high 59 passes for 520 yards and two touchdowns, he also averaged 5.3 yards on 50 rushing attempts.