Deke: Bobby & Hokie note offense's fast start, but D closes hard
by Deke Bellavia,posted Jul 28 2014 1:47PM
The Saints worked through what felt like a cool autumn day at practice this morning at the Advocare Faclility. And even if you know absoultely nothing about football, by listening to Coach Ryan and Coach Vitt you would conclude that the Saints defense did not get off to a good start this morning. I can't write out 95% of what was coming out Rob Ryan, let's just say he was hot. It gets intense on the field, and like the players, coaches are passionate. Coach Ryan was trying to inspire his defense.
"let's here the blank pads." "don't over run sh--". Hold that blank blank edge.". Coach Rob Ryan not happy with his defense right now!
As I walked onto the practice field this morning, I could hear a little hip hop music playing over the loudspeaker. Maybe the Saints offense liked the music more than the defense did, because the Black and Gold defense was out of sync!
There were 15 plays run during the inside drill and the Saints offense won 11 of them. Mark Ingram had a nice five yard gain and reeled off a huge gainer, cutting back to the left side and finding nothing but green grass in front of him.
In team action, TE Jimmy Graham could not get his hands on a pass from QB Drew Brees on the first play. Later, it looked like a miscommunication between Brees and Toon happened as the pass went sailing downfield and Toon had broken off his route, with the ball going incomplete.
Brees would later connect with TE Jimmy Graham and WR Nick Toon for nice completions during the team period. Brees hit WR Marques Colston for 20 yard gain on seven on seven drils as Brees hit #12 on a crossing route.
As practice continued, the defense picked up the pace. "It has been two days in pads, and in my opinion I give the nod to the Saints defense," said Hokie Gajan. "It's easy to get caught up in what happens early on, but if you look at the entire practice, I think the defense did well on the back end of the two padded sessions."
The weather continues to be a factor, and today there was no rain but plenty of wind. "You could tell there were a lot of short passes and check downs, and that was caused by the wind," Gajan said. "I don't think you can fully judge the passing game on what took place today. The high winds altered a lot of plays out there."
The Cajun Cannon praised the Saints offense during the early inside drill. "I've got two pages of quotes - I don't think I've ever heard Coach Rob Ryan that animated!" Hebert said. Even though the offense had the upper hand in inside drills, Bobby said that defensive linemen Aikem Hicks and Tyrunn Walker both did their jobs. "It was more the back-up players that struggled."
Bobby noted that the offensive line opened big holes against the defense, and Saints RB's had their way more times than not during the inside drill. RB's Pierre Thomas, Khiry Robinson and Tim Flanders reeled off big gains. Robinson would later do a solid job of picking the blitz on safety Kenny Vaccaro. Travaris Cadet found a gaping hole after taking handoff as he cut back to the left for a lot of real estate ahead of him - I'd say about 60 yards.
Some notable plays made by the defense included a pass batted down by DL Tyrunn Walker on QB Ryan Griffin. CB Kennan Lewis ("West Bank") had a very good morning as he had back to back pass break ups on WR Andy Tanner and WR Joe Morgan.
You could hear the veteran DB Lewis encouraging youngster DB Pierre Warren, to whom the players have given the nickname "Pink Panther." Warren picked off a pass as WR Brandon Coleman could not hang on to the football.
"Listen, when a veteran player (Lewis) gives you a nickname and says you can play, then you got a chance. I think Pierre Warren could be a darkhorse to make the team," the Cajun Cannon said. Warren is a rookie Safety who played college football at Jacksonville State. Kennan Lewis was in on three straight plays in which he affected the pass.
CB Patrick (P-Rob) Robinson continues to have a good camp as he was in on broken up pass against QB Drew Brees. Robinson could have had an interception.
Bobby gave credit to the Saints defense for bouncing back after a slow start this morning. "I thought the defense made some nice plays as practice progressed. The defense got gashed early in the inside drill, but I saw several plays made in the second half of practice."
Rookie WR Brandin Cooks is no ordinary rookie - he looks like a veteran out there. Cooks caught a pass in traffic, and he looks so natural returning punts on special teams.
"Cooks looks like a seasoned vet out there. He runs precise routes and he's putting on a clinic!. I can see why the Saints moved up to get him," Bobby said of the Saints prized rookie. Hebert continues to like the play of WR Seantavius Jones, too. "He's having a good camp and he will need to keep making plays if he's going to make the team in some capacity."
Bobby said that fellow rookie, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste have a good size advantage over some players they face. "Baptiste uses his size well in one on one drills."