Two days after Jimmy Graham left New Orleans’ Sunday game against the Buccaneers, the Saints have signed free agent tight end Tom Crabtree to a contract, a source tells Field Yates of ESPN.com (via Twitter). No corresponding move should be necessary, since the team recently opened up a roster spot by placing safety Jairus Byrd on injured reserve.
The signing of Crabtree isn’t necessarily a bad omen for Graham’s status. The star tight end’s shoulder injury isn’t considered serious, and the Saints are on a bye week, so Graham will have seven extra days to recover. Still, the fact that New Orleans signed a veteran tight end suggests that Graham may not be available for the club’s next practices, and Crabtree will give the team an extra body at the position.
Crabtree, who has spent most of his career with the Packers, has accumulated 22 receptions for 323 yards and five touchdowns during his four NFL seasons. A year ago, he played seven games – starting five – for the Buccaneers.