By Mike Triplett | ESPN Staff Writer
METAIRIE, La. -- It would have been nice for the New Orleans Saints if they could have put their foot down with Michael Thomas and declared that no wide receiver is worth $20 million per year.
After all, there was a time not too long ago when skill-position players felt somewhat expendable in New Orleans.
The Saints traded tight end Jimmy Graham in 2015, just one year after he signed a contract extension worth $10 million per year. They dealt receiver Brandin Cooks in 2017, before his rookie contract was up.
In both cases, the Saints felt their offense could keep running smoothly with coach Sean Payton and quarterback Drew Brees behind the wheel -- and that their resources would be better spent elsewhere.
But times have changed....
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