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Drew Brees: Jimmy Graham 'will be ready' for season opener

Jimmy Graham and Drew Brees have hooked up for 41 touchdowns since Graham joined the Saints in 2010. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Jimmy Graham and Drew Brees have hooked up for 41 touchdowns since Graham joined the Saints in 2010. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees is confident that tight end Jimmy Graham will be on the field when the Saints begin the 2014 season, according to USA Today's Tom Pelissero.

Graham has been vocal about his displeasure with receiving the franchise tag from the Saints this off-season, and there has been talk that he may holdout through training camp, but Brees told Pellisero his top target will be prepared when the games start.

"Listen, I know Jimmy will be ready to play, whether that means he's coming in tomorrow, April 21st or August 21st," Brees added. "I know Jimmy Graham will be ready to play, and he'll be a big part of our offense and a big part of our team for a long time. I'm very confident that will work out."

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Brees previously fought with the Saints front office over a franchise tag, skipping OTA's in 2012 after receiving the designation, and finally reporting to camp after he had signed a five-year, $100 million contract with the team.

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