Co-Host of WWL's "SportsTalk with Bobby Hebert & Deke Bellavia," Weekdays 4-8PM
Deke: Bobby and Hokie impressed with Saints D at OTA's
by Deke Bellavia,posted May 30 2013 6:28PM
The New Orleans Saints were back on the practice field this morning. Today marked the second time the media was allowed to attend a Saints OTA (Organized Team Activity) session. The media was escorted to the field a little before 11AM, and practice ended about noon.
Some of the things that stood out to the Cajun Cannon included the first handful of plays in the team period. Hebert said that the defense did a good job of covering the pass catchers forcing Drew Brees and the other QB’s to hold on to the ball in the pocket too long.
“I think it was a good day for the secondary. And I’ll give the edge to the defense,” said the Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert.
Several times in the team sessions at today’s OTA the QB’s had trouble getting the ball off in a timely manner.
After the practice Coach Sean Payton addressed the media and talked about wide receiver Joe Morgan, arrested and charged with DWI over the weekend.
“I just think each team is faced with it at some point, hopefully less than more,” Payton said. “It is what it is in regards to the lesson you hope the players, including Joe, learn from it. It’s our job to keep reinforcing the importance of being smart and making right decisions and it’s something that we really try to pride ourselves in since we began here in 2006.”
Former Saints fullback and current Saints Color Analyst Hokie Gajan was at practice this morning as well. Hokie said that he saw a few new things defensively this week.
“It looks like to me that Rob Ryan (Saints Defensive Coordinator) has had the opportunity to spend some good time with his players and install more packages.”
Hokie also said that he could tell that the defense was giving some different looks at this week’s OTA compared to the one the media attended a week. “A few times the QB had to eat the ball back in the pocket. I thought that was due to good coverage in the secondary,” Gajan said.
New Saints Defensive Coordinator Rob Ryan talked about the work he and his defense are getting in right now.
“Most of it is looking correct (digesting the defense). There were a couple of mistakes out there where we really looked exotic. The thing I have been the most impressed about is our veterans and how quickly they’ve picked things up. Guys have position flexibility all through this roster. There are so many talented guys here but, the veterans in particular (have impressed me). The Will Smiths, the (Jonathan)Vilmas, Curtis Lofton, and Roman Harper. I’ve been really impressed with how much these guys love football, how much they study, and what quick learners they are. It’s really been impressive.”
OLB Junior Galette and Will Smith, DE Cam Jordan and CB Patrick Robinson all stood out this morning. Robinson did a good job of covering WR Marques Colston. Robinson knocked the ball out of Colston’s hands on one exchange.
CB Jabari Greer had solid coverage on Colston as well and S Rafael Bush came up big with a near interception. However Bush was out of bounds when he caught the ball. The offense did have their moments as well.
Brees completed a pass to Colston for about 15 yards while Brees went deep to TE Jimmy Graham later in team drills.
Next week's mini-camp sessions: The Saints will get back to work next week as they hold their annual mini-camp sessions next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The Saints will hit the field at 10:15AM with practice concluding at 12:45PM. The morning practices are open to the public and there is no charge to view practice. Gates will open to the public 45 minutes prior to each practice. And parking for fans is available in the Zephyr Field parking lot. However if the Saints are forced to practice indoors due to bad weather, no fans will be allowed in the Saints' indoor practice facility.