Brees remains sidelined; Evans too

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. -- Drew Brees was held out of practice again on Tuesday with a strained left oblique. But New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton said he was not yet ready to rule Brees out of Friday’s preseason opener at the St. Louis Rams.

“Like I said yesterday and the day before, we’re just gonna take it day by day,” Payton said. “We’re just gonna try to see where he’s at each day. We’ll be smart, though.”

Brees, who was injured during last Friday’s practice, was a little more active on the sidelines Tuesday. He joined the team for stretching exercises. Then he worked with the trainers off to the side, doing some running, planting and turning with the football in his hand.

In other injury/participation news Tuesday, Saints guard Jahri Evans left the field early in practice for unknown reasons and did not return to the field. Backup guards Marcel Jones and Jason Weaver took turns replacing him with the first-string offense. No update was available after practice.

Receivers Joe Morgan and Andy Tanner and cornerback Derrius Brooks also sat out practice for the first time with undisclosed injuries.

Meanwhile, defensive end Glenn Foster and Weaver returned to practice after being sidelined on Monday.

Linebacker Victor Butler and fullback Erik Lorig remained absent from practice for undisclosed reasons.

Also still not practicing with apparent injuries: cornerback Champ Bailey, guard Ben Grubbs, defensive tackle John Jenkins, cornerback Terrence Frederick, tight end Je'Ron Hamm, offensive tackle Ty Nsekhe and receiver Steve Hull.

Receiver Kenny Stills was in pads for the early portion of practice but didn’t do much team or individual work. Safety Jairus Byrd still has not participated in any full-team drills since returning from back surgery last week. But he has done everything else in practice.