Drew Brees, who reportedly won't report to the start of the New Orleans Saints' voluntary workouts without a new contract in hand, talked to Tom Benson on Friday morning and was "close" on a new deal, the owner said.

"I talked to Drew Brees this morning. ... He is due in next week. We're close," Benson said during a news conference announcing his purchase of the NBA's New Orleans Hornets.

Posed with a question about Brees in the first query of the media session, Benson hinted the team is nearing a long-term deal for the quarterback. The Saints placed the exclusive-rights tag on Brees last month, locking him in for at least one more season.

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