by Kristian Garic, email@example.com,,posted Aug 4 2014 7:24PM
The Saints returned to the practice field today, without quarterback Drew Brees. Saints Coach Sean Payton says Brees is day to day with an abdominal injury. "We will make sure it can't get aggravated again. It's the type of injury that if you force it, you can reaggravate it," Payton said. Brees spent most of the practice as a spectator in this afternoon's workout, and did some conditioning work on the side with the rest of injured players. I wouldn't expect Brees to play this Friday night in St. Louis when the Saints open the preseason against the Rams. The Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert says the Saints are doing the right thing holding Brees out. "It's your core, and anytime you have a core muscle injury, it's not smart to push that. We don't want this nagging Brees all season long. Drew could play in one preseason game and be fine for the season," Bobby explained. The silver lining in the Brees injury is that it gives the coaching staff a great opportunity to evaluate the backup QBs with Ryan Griffin and Luke McCown fighting for that spot. (More on that later).
Champ is back:
Well kind of. For the first time in a few days we finally saw veteran defensive back Champ Baily on the stationary bike. Bailey wasn't in pads, and Payton didn't elaborate on his status any further. Wide receiver Kenny Stills is also working his way back onto the field. Stills started practice in pads and did the walk through portion, then he did some side conditioning but did not participate in team drills. Linebacker Victor Butler (undisclosed injury) and fullback Erik Lorig (undisclosed injury) were both no goes in practice.
I think this was the first practice that rookie wide receiver Brandin Cooks didn't get a mention, and might have had just an ordinary practice. About an hour into practice I didn't send one tweet about a particular play that he made. He didn't have a bad practice, we're just used to seeing him mesmerize. Today he didn't do anything in particular that stood out.
RG4 vs McCown:
As I mentioned earlier, with Brees out (Oblique) backups Ryan Griffin and Luke McCown have received the bulk of the work with the first team unit. Griffin has looked particularly sharp, and he knows where to go with the football. "That's half the battle of playing quarterback in the NFL. Griffing has been impressive. He knows where to throw the ball, and he's getting it there with good zip and accuracy," explained Bobby Hebert. I wrote about this a few days ago, and I still believe Griffin has the edge over McCown as the backup. Barring a horrible preseason showing, he should win the job. The Saints value the extra roster spot that would be vacated by the third QB.