After a day in which the heat was one of the hot topics (no pun intended) the New Orleans Saints were able to work outside with a much cooler feel. A few showers cooled things off; the real heat didn’t hit until practice was just about over.
A plane flew over the Saints facility for about an hour during practice. It carried a clear banner that read “Free Payton.” Fans, players and coaches gazed with delight.
Now on to the action at today’s practice. “I think I saw more dropped balls today than at any other practice,” Bobby Hebert said. Hebert noted that Jimmy Graham had two drops while Colston and Moore also dropped a pass each. Hebert also pointed out that for the second straight day Saints LB Jonathan Casillas performed well. Casillas picked off a pass from QB Drew Brees. “Jonathan is a playmaker who can help, but he’s got to remain healthy in order to help consistently,” said Hebert.
Other highlights included more plays by wide receivers Courtney Roby and Andy Tanner. Roby had a 40-yard receptions from QB Chase Daniel. #14 Andy Tanner hauled in a 13-yard grab from Drew Brees followed by a 20-yard grab from Chase Daniel. “I think my strength is catching the football. I’ll do whatever the coaches ask of me. I’m just trying to get better each day,” Tanner said. Tanner will join Bobby, Hokie and Deke today on Sports Talk.
In team drills QB Drew Brees was sharp as the Saints worked on third down situations. Drew completed three straight passes. First on a third and three Drew hit Pierre Thomas for a four-yard gain. Then, Drew connected with Andy Tanner for a 13-yard reception…followed by a six-yard pass caught by #12 Marques Colston on a third and five situation.
DE Junior Galette came up with a sack in the team portion of practice. Perhaps the biggest play of the day took place when QB Chase Daniel threw a long ball to WR Joe Morgan. It looked to be about a 40-yard TD.
There was some fun today too. Several Saints veteran players including Jonathan Casillas and Scott Shanle had fun with some rookie players. #38 Johnny Thomas and #46 Kadarron Anderson were duck tapped to the goal post on the far end of the practice field near the Saints weight room. Then the players gave them a little ice water dashing. I’m sure that had to feel good in those scorching hot temps.
The Saints wrapped up their 2012 outdoor practices. The team will practice indoors Thursday morning…then take on the Jacksonville Jaguars Friday night in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.