METAIRIE, La. -- The New Orleans Saints are interested in dealing for a draft pick higher than their current No. 10 slot in the first round, but have had only informal talks about it, general manager Mickey Loomis said Tuesday.
"We've talked to a number of teams in front of us about the possibility of moving forward. It's all preliminary discussion," Loomis said. "We've just expressed a desire to talk about it with a number of teams."
Loomis declined to say which teams he had spoken with about trading up in the draft or what their initial demands were for compensation.
After the Saints went 7-9 last season, head coach Sean Payton said the Saints would need to improve their defense in the offseason. Through free agency, they have acquired linebackers Jonathan Vilma in a trade with the Jets for their fourth-round draft pick and signed free agent Dan Morgan. The Saints also brought in free agent defensive end Bobby McCray.
"The first step is to get an idea of what the cost to move forward is going to be," Loomis said. "So that's really what the discussions to date have been."
Long's deal with Miami "will impact the discussions that we'll have," Loomis said, but again declined to get specific.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press