Larry Warford goes to Saints; Nick Fairley stays

Former Detroit Lions guard Larry Warford is signing with the New Orleans Saints, while defensive tackle Nick Fairley is re-signing with the team, sources told ESPN's Josina Anderson.

Fairley, 29, is coming off a career season, which included a career-high 6.5 sacks after settling for one-year "prove-it" deals with the Saints in 2016 and the Rams in 2015. His 22 quarterback hits tied for 13th in the NFL, and he also had a career-high 43 tackles and nine tackles-for-loss while playing a full 16-game slate for the first time in his career.

Fairley had just 29 tackles and a half sack as a rotational backup with the Rams in 2015, but he was lauded for being a disruptive presence.

Selected by the Lions with the 13th overall pick in the 2011 NFL draft, Fairley's career got off to a turbulent start because of injuries, inconsistent production, weight issues and questions about his work ethic. By all accounts, Fairley has matured and improved in all of those areas in recent years, dating back to when he hired a personal chef during his final year in Detroit in 2014.

Warford has started every game he has played in at right guard for the Lions, winning the job during his first preseason with the franchise after being a third-round pick in 2013 out of Kentucky.

The 25-year-old was considered Detroit's best offensive lineman last season and was one of the top guards available in free agency. He's considered a strong run-blocker and pass-blocker and this season found a strong rhythm during his preparation each week.

Warford, who believes he can fit in any scheme, spends his offseasons working with offensive line guru LeCharles Bentley, whom Warford often praises for the progress he has made during his career.

ESPN's Michael Rothstein and Mike Triplett contributed to this report.