Heated practice: We’re officially in the heart of training camp! That was very clear today, as nearly every offensive and defensive drill resulted in some pushing and shoving or trash talking. The first incident occurred when defensive end Cameron Jordan was matched up against rookie offensive tackle Tavon Rooks in one-on-one pass rushing drills. Jordan thought he was being held during the drill and pushed Rooks, and the two big guys got in each other’s face. Nothing further transpired. “He was wearing a white jersey and got in the way!” Jordan said after practice.
Running back Khiry Robinson and linebacker Curtis Lofton got into a scuffle in the first portion of team vs team drills. Robinson and Lofton went to the ground, but it was quickly broken up by Drew Brees. Once the two were separated, you could hear Lofton chirping to Robinson “I got all you want homeboy!” It was one of the funnier moments of practice. “That kind of stuff is healthy for a team, it means there is real competition out there, and they’re aren’t just going through the motions” explained the Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert.
Terron Armstead: 2nd year LT Terron Armstead might have thrown the block of camp in the running game drill. Armstead decleated defensive lineman Glenn Foster, drawing several oooh’s and ahhh’s from the fans and media. “I don’t want to put him in Canton right now, but you can see he’s playing with a lot of confidence,” said coach Sean Payton. Armstead won both of his matches against OLB Junior Galette in 1 on 1 pass rush.
P-Rob: Defensive back Patrick Robinson is clearly having the best camp of his career. The former first round draft pick has made a number of plays on the football deflecting some passes and coming up with two interceptions. “If he would just hold onto the ball, he would have about six interceptions in camp so far,” said Hebert. The Cannon is right, Robinson has missed some opportunities but you can clearly see he feels the urgency to have a preseason and is fighting for snaps and perhaps a roster spot.
The Butler Did It: I’ve been asked a lot about linebacker Victor Butler during the first week of camp. I can tell you, he’s been rotating with the 1st and 2nd team units, and at times he looks rusty. Butler missed all of last season a with an ACL injury and just doesn’t look like he has his legs underneath him yet. I think it will come, just remember he hasn’t worn shoulder pads or a helmet for 18 months.
RG4: Former Tulane quarterback Ryan Griffin is staking claim to the primary backup quarterback position behind Drew Brees. Griffin has been running with the twos in camp, and has looked pretty sharp with his passes and looks like he has a good grasp on the system. Veteran Luke McCown has more experience, but the Saints want Griffin to win the job, and the preseason games will be huge for Griffin. If he plays well, then he’s virtually assured to get the gig. If he struggles, it will open the door for McCown to take the job back. For now, it’s Griffin’s job to lose.