08:02 AM ET 03.01 | At this point, many may be wondering just what is taking so long in the case of New Orleans and its franchise quarterback. Frustration has built with Saints QB Drew Brees, according to sources with knowledge of the situation, and the team will use its franchise tag on him, short of a rapidly developing long-term deal. The NFL's franchise-tag deadline is March 5, and free agency begins the following week. As recently as Feb. 23, Brees told The Times-Picayune that he "still was very optimistic" a long-term deal would be reached, but the former Super Bowl MVP is surprised the situation has taken this long. ... [The falling price of franchise tags and Peyton Manning's contract situation] complicate the top-end quarterback market.