Well the dreaded annual NFL dead period is here, it’s that time for the players (and coaches) to recharge the batteries and get ready for the long grind. This time of the year from mid June until late July there is virtually no Saints news to speak of (unless a player gets in trouble) so today will be the last time we see these guys for a while. Saints 2

Today’s Saints Mini Camp was cut short, it ended at 12:30 pm. I’m thinking it was a couple of things that factored into the decision, first yesterday’s session went beyond the quitting time by about 15 minutes – that combined with the heat and just giving the players a break to get the exit meetings rolling and letting them start their free time a little sooner factored in I believe.

Today I had four extra eyes helping me out there, Judy Boggan, a contributor at Saints report (thanks Judy) and our own Christy Chauvin here at WDW (she’ll add some observations later)

Okay this is going to be kind of short because to be honest the Saints didn’t do many team drills at Saints Mini Camp, it was mostly individual group drills (a lot of basic muscle memory drills)

  • Stephone Anthony, Hau’oli Kikaha, Travaris Barnes and Tyeler Davidson doing work with the 2nd unit
  • During stretching, the beer guy offers Brandon Browner a beer, he acts like he’s going to take it and then flips his pockets inside out saying he doesn’t have any cash
  • Something that I have never seen at any camp, the offensive and defensive linemen go out on passing routes for a brief period, rumbling, stumbling, bumbling, fumbling – that was excellent
  • The running backs are going through a drill where someone holds their jersey from behind (while they are running) and another player tries to strip the ball
  • Nick Toon and Brandon Coleman getting work with the 1st unit
  • During a running drill Tim Hightower showing no ill effects from his knee issues, while walking back Sean Payton has a little encouragement chat with him. Good to see, I’m really pulling for this guy and his long road back
  • Khiry Robinson showing a nice burst of speed with a little dump pass
  • Just an observation – Jalen Saunders is probably the smallest guy out there not counting kickers
  • Nice roll out pass from Garrett Grayson to this new WR James, #87 ( not much info on him, he’s not on the Saints official roster but he has great size–6’5″)
  • Some of the players on the sidelines not participating – Junior Galette, Broderick Bunkley, Akiem Hicks, Davis Tull, Devin Breaux, Kenny Vacarro
  • Davis Tull still getting individual work with a trainer and later goes with his positional group through the drills (although not participating)
  • I see Rob Ryan on the sidelines teaching up Kenny Vacarro and Devin Breaux, giving a little one-on-one advice on technique
  • Special teams are doing a drill to angle kick a punt and down it inside the five yard line. SJB is getting work being a gunner here (among others)
  • Dustin Hopkins misses probably a 50-yarder wide right. Payton has a long discussion with him – just explaining things.  It didn’t look like he was hammering him with the Payton look
  • Zach Hocker misses one from the same distance

A few more minor individual drills go on and abruptly practice is over.

Well it was fun bringing some observations from out here in Metairie to you and I have a few things brewing coming up for the “dead period” – anyways I enjoyed it and keep an eye out on this post as Christy will update her thoughts here as well.

Christy’s Observations

The defense concentrated on lower body tackle drills as you can see from these two vines.

 

They tackled low and jerked up to take receivers especially the tights ends off balance.  Basically, it was a wrap up tackle and instead of a drag down, it was a jerk up.

Lots of punting today with good hustle and catch by Willie Snead.  Also Nick Toon got downfield and hustled under a punt as well.

I did get out there to say hello to Aikem Hicks and John Jenkins.  It was nice to see them again after having gotten the chance to interview them earlier in the Spring.  Also, I introduced myself as a reporter to Rafael Bush who remembered his twitter interactions with WDW.

 

John Jenkins

John Jenkins

Rafael Bush

Rafael Bush

Getting some dap from Aikem Hicks

Getting some dap from Aikem Hicks