The New Orleans Saints and star tight end Jimmy Graham beat an NFL deadline to strike a deal on a long-term contract.
It's a four-year, $40 million contract that includes $21 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.
"It's official," Graham wrote on Twitter. "I'm bleeding black and gold this morning! Thank you WhoDatNation for all the support."
The Saints had until 4 p.m. for Graham to agree to terms or he would have had to play this season under a $7.053 million franchise tender.
"The New Orleans Saints confirm that the team has agreed to terms on multi-year deal with TE Jimmy Graham," Saints spokesman Greg Bensel wrote on Twitter.
Now, the Saints and Graham have avoided that and have hammered out a long-term contract.
This follows Graham losing a grievance where he argued unsuccessfully that he should be classified as a wide receiver. On Monday, Graham filed an appeal of that ruling. At this point, the appeal should be regarded as moot other than for procedural reasons if it continues.
Follow me on Twitter: @RavensInsider
Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun
Check out our partners at TiqIQ for the best deals on all games on the 2014 NFL schedule.
SEP 12 Football Rumor Mill
Here's what you need to know after 2 weeks of college football.
SEP 11 Jesse Lawrence
Jesse Lawrence takes a look at some affordable NFL action this weekend.
SEP 07 Joel Corry
Can the Seahawks repeat? Are the Chiefs and Panthers ripe for a fall? The NFP takes a look at those questions and more.