The New Orleans Saints continued their training camp practices on Wednesday, August 24, 2011 out in Oxnard, California in preparation for the upcoming preseason game against the Oakland Raiders. The cooler temperatures and change of location has been great for the team and helps keep their heads in the game.
After practice, Coach Sean Payton and a number of players touched on various topics from the day’s session including their time spent out west.
“This has been great. The timing for us has been good. We were finished with our camp out in New Orleans and this gave us an opportunity to come out here for a week before we head north to Oakland so it’s been great. The people have been wonderful. The city of Oxnard and the hotel here are very used to the needs of an NFL team and it’s very organized.”
~ Players not practicing on Wednesday:
- Ezra Butler
- Tom Johnson
- Johnny Patrick
- Jeff Charleston
- Chris Taylor
- Will Herring
- Mark Ingram
- Fabian Washington
- Chris Taylor
- Aubrayo Franklin
- Clint Ingram
- Roger Allen
- Carl Nicks
- Junior Galette
- Jarred Fayson
- Mitch King
Image gallery of the New Orleans Saints training grounds in Oxnard, CA
~ Coach Payton said that he expects Mark Ingram to play against the Raiders on Sunday as he will be returning to practice on Thursday.
~ Linebacker Clint Ingram is questionable for Sunday night’s game and Will Herring is probable which means that rookie Martez Wilson will see a lot of time at strongside linebacker.
~ Nothing more is known by the Saints then anyone in the media regarding the possible two game suspension that DE Will Smith will face at the beginning of the season. This all stems of course from the long ongoing Starcaps case.
~ Practice on Wednesday continue to stress better execution of plays overall and just fundamentals. Play actually seems to be getting a tad crisper and sharper as the week goes on.
~ RB Pierre Thomas continues to seemingly get healthier with each practice and he likes the opportunity for the upcoming season to play with Ingram, Chris Ivory, and Darren Sproles.
“It is the same as it was with myself, Reggie (Bush) and Mike Bell in 2009. I feel it’s the same way. You have (Darren) Sproles, who is a fast, quick and an agile guy like Reggie. You have Mark Ingram, who is basically both – he can be both. Then there is myself and I think I can be both too. I can be agile and add a little shake sometimes when I can pull it off. I see us as a three-headed monster as we were in ’09. I see us as a good rotation and a dangerous backfield. Defenses are not going to know what to expect when all of us get in a good rotation or if we are in at the same time. You never know what the future might hold for us.
“It is going to be a changeup. You have a chance where myself and Sproles could be in the game at the same time, Ingram and Sproles could be in the game or Ingram and myself. It is a good change up to have three different backs in there – three dangerous backs back there. It allows our offense to be adverse and try new things with all of us. We bring different skill levels to the table. I see Ingram as a shifty guy but a hard-hitting guy who can move a pile. I see Sproles as kind of the same thing. He is a guy you can’t really see in the backfield. I already talked to some of the linebackers and they said they can’t see him at all when he gets the ball. He is quick and can catch the ball very well.”
~ Safety Malcolm Jenkins knows that mistakes happen in the preseason and was able to pinpoint exactly what went wrong on Saturday night against the Houston Texans.
“Of course there were mistakes, but those can happen in preseason. The tackling was bad. The demeanor in which we played wasn’t up to our standards. We want to get back to the style of defense that we play, hitting, playing fast, offensively scoring points and running the ball. At practice we’ve picked up the tempo and there’s a sense of urgency.”
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