Payton said the Saints have been studying the two-time Pro Bowler for the past couple months while he’s been rehabbing from a March surgery to repair a herniated disc in his back.
"I think there’s a fit for us if it works out," Payton said, indicating that the visit was more about the player specifically than a need to add tight end depth, in general.
The Saints didn’t add any tight ends in free agency or the draft after trading Jimmy Graham to the Seattle Seahawks in March. They’ve spoken highly of current tight ends Benjamin Watson and Josh Hill, but they’re thin on experienced options behind them.
"He’s a guy that we’ve studied quite a bit now in the last couple months. So it was just finding the right time (to visit), and it was good to have that chance to meet him yesterday," Payton said of Gresham, who flew over from Dallas for a day trip rather than an overnight visit. "He’s a player that we’re obviously well aware of, coming out five years ago in the draft (when Gresham was drafted in Round 1 -- two rounds ahead of Graham).
"I thought the visit went pretty good."
I wrote more Thursday morning about Gresham’s tenure in Cincinnati, which included a fair share of highs and lows. He has 280 catches for 2,722 yards and 24 touchdowns in his career.