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New Orleans shores up defensive backfield, signs safety Jairus Byrd to a six-year deal

The New Orleans Saints have agreed to a six-year contract with safety Jairus Byrd, shoring up a depleted defensive backfield that lost a safety to free agency and recently released another one.

Byrd's contract was announced on Tuesday night at the end of the first day of NFL free agency. It gives the Saints another hard-hitting safety to pair with Kenny Vaccaro.

Byrd, a former second-round pick by Buffalo, has gone to three Pro Bowls in his five seasons. He has 22 interceptions, 11 forced fumbles and three sacks since entering the NFL in 2009 out of Oregon.

New Orleans lost free agent Malcolm Jenkins to Philadelphia earlier Tuesday and released safety Roman Harper in February. Vaccaro was the only safety remaining on the Saints' roster.