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Saints' Sean Payton hopes to re-sign Mark Ingram

The New Orleans Saints are one of the few teams in salary-cap jail.

Sitting at approximately $22 million above the salary cap ceiling, per, the Saints will need to make deft maneuvers to upgrade their roster after a disappointing 2014 campaign.

The cap troubles could preclude them from retaining running back Mark Ingram, one of their few bright spots last season.

On Monday coach Sean Payton spoke with FOX Sports while attending the NBA's Pelicans-Mavericks game in Dallas, saying he's had discussions with Ingram about a possible return.

"I spoke with him today," Payton said, via the New Orleans Advocate. "The good thing about Mark is that we're real close with his agent. We work a lot with Joel (Segal). Mickey will talk with him quite a bit. Obviously he's someone that we want to keep. Hopefully we can do that."

The 25-year-old Ingram currently sits at No. 24 on our Top 101 free agents list, the No. 2 running back set to hit the market. After his breakout season, Ingram has likely priced himself out of New Orleans, despite Payton's positive hopes.

One other note from Payton's interview:

Remember the start of last free agency when the Saints blew everyone away by netting safety Jairus Byrd with a whopping six-year, $54 million contract?

It's almost that anniversary.

And to remember it, Payton passed on that his high-priced safety, who played just four games last season, is on pace for offseason workouts.

"He's doing well," Payton said of Byrd. "His rehab's on schedule. He'll be cleared for minicamp. We're really looking at about two or three weeks away from him being 100 percent."

The latest Around The NFL Podcast breaks down all the franchise tags and discusses where Ndamukong Suh will land. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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