Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Early observations from Saints camp
By Pat Yasinskas
Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas
METAIRIE, La. -- The NFC South tour of training camps continues today with the Saints. I caught their morning practice and will be back out there this afternoon. I'll be gathering stuff for our Camp Confidential profile on the Saints for Monday.
As a matter of fact, I'm going to spend the next few hours working on Carolina's Camp Confidential for Thursday. But, before I jump into that, I wanted to share some quick observations on what I saw this morning.
- All this talk about the Saints being more aggressive on defense isn't just talk. It's real. You can see it instantly on the practice field. We'll have much more on that in the Camp Confidential segment.
- The nicest play I saw Wednesday morning was a fully extended Marques Colston making a catch in the back of the end zone. A lot of people tend to forget how good Colston is because injuries kept him somewhat quiet last year. At full health, Colston can be as productive as just about any receiver in the league.
- Defensive tackle Rod Coleman now is wearing the No. 75 jersey he wanted. He had been wearing No. 72 and Tim Duckworth had No. 75. Not sure yet how it all transpired, but Duckworth probably made a profit on this deal.
- A couple of young linebackers jumped out at me. Anthony Waters and Jonathan Casillas seemed to be around the ball constantly.
- With Colston, Lance Moore, Robert Meachem and Devery Henderson, the Saints have an impressive group of receivers. Courtney Roby could be in that mix, too. Saw him make a couple of nice catches this morning.
- I know Joey Harrington is considered a bust because of his status as a high draft pick. But forget all that and view him as just another guy competing for a job. Through that lens, Harrington looks pretty good. He was throwing the ball well and he could end up moving ahead of Mark Brunell as Drew Brees' backup. You could do a lot worse than Harrington as a backup. He's still got first-round physical talent and he's never been on a team with this kind of offensive talent and he's never been around an offensive coach as good as Sean Payton.
- Malcolm Jenkins is a great talent and the Saints have big plans for him. But the rookie is holding out of camp in a contract squabble and you can't help but wonder how that might impact his career. Starting cornerbacks Jabari Greer and Tracy Porter are looking very good. Randall Gay and Jason David aren't bad backups and Jenkins falls further behind them with each practice he misses.