NFC South: Larry Beavers

METAIRIE, La. – Time for some observations from the New Orleans Saints’ first practice of camp.
  • Rookie cornerback Patrick Robinson got his contract signed, passed his physical and got on the field for a good chunk of practice. I’m not going to anoint him after one practice, but he looked good out there. Extremely athletic, and I can see him immediately being the third corner behind Jabari Greer and Tracy Porter. By the way, Robinson doesn’t seem to have the same problem with hazing as Dallas rookie Dez Bryant. Robinson walked off the field carrying the shoulder pads and helmets of some veteran members of the secondary.
  • Jon Gruden was out at practice, and I think this is a repeat of last year. That’s when Gruden spent a few days with his old buddy Sean Payton and sat in on the meetings with the quarterbacks. Coaches are often superstitious, and Payton might view Gruden as a good-luck charm.
  • From what I saw, Troy Evans was getting most of the work at Scott Fujita’s old linebacker spot. But I think this one will be a battle throughout camp and the preseason. Jo-Lonn Dunbar and some other young linebackers are in the mix.
  • It appeared Alex Brown got the first-team work at Charles Grants’ old defensive end spot. He looked pretty good. With Jimmy Wilkerson and Bobby McCray as backups, I think the Saints are in better shape at that spot than they were a year ago.
  • With Robert Meachem and Marques Colston not practicing because of injuries, Lance Moore was shining at wide receiver. I saw him make multiple big plays.
  • Perhaps the most eye-turning play of the morning session came when rookie quarterback Sean Canfield hooked up with Larry Beavers on a deep route down the left sideline.
  • I listed long-snapper Jason Kyle as a veteran, who possibly could be on the bubble, the other day. So much for that. The Saints created Robinson’s roster spot by releasing Clint Gresham, the guy who was supposed to challenge Kyle.
  • Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams brought up the so-called “Super Bowl hangover’’ that the media has touched upon. Williams got pretty emotional and said he resents those implications. He backed up his reasoning extensively and said this season’s team can be better than last season’s. I’ll share all that with you Saturday when we feature the Saints in our Camp Confidential segment.
  • Another reminder to any fans that were planning on coming out for Friday's afternoon practice: Don't do it. Because of the extreme heat, the Saints will practice indoors. That will be closed to the public. The same plan is in place for Saturday afternoon's session. I'll be out at this afternoon's practice and will share some more observations with you tonight.
METAIRIE, La. -– I had my first chance to see the New Orleans Saints since the Super Bowl as they went through two minicamp practices Friday. It was a bit of a media circus, but you’ve got to expect that when you’re the defending champion and the Saints seemed focused on business. Here are some notes and observations:

  • Tight end Jeremy Shockey sat out the morning session because of back spasms, coach Sean Payton said. But Shockey took part in most of the afternoon session.
  • The Saints had undrafted quarterback Greg Paulus (Syracuse) in for another tryout. They already had him in for their rookie camp. Not sure whether Paulus will end up getting a contract. If he does, he’ll compete with Chase Daniel and Sean Canfield to be the No. 3 quarterback. More than ever, I’m convinced the Saints have to add a veteran just in case something happens to Drew Brees.
  • Speaking of veteran backups, Mark Brunell’s stuff still is in his locker. I wouldn’t read too much into that because Brunell supposedly is ticketed to join the New York Jets before training camp. I’m thinking the Saints will sign someone like Patrick Ramsey or Luke McCown, who previously have visited with the team, but I’m not totally ruling out the possibility of Brunell returning.
  • Running back Pierre Thomas and left tackle Jammal Brown were not present. Both are restricted free agents, who have not signed their tenders and are looking for long-term deals. I usually try to stay out of contract negotiations, but I’m thinking not showing isn’t a good move by Thomas or Brown. The Saints have other options at both positions.
  • Speaking of running backs, I’m not a scout and don’t carry a stop watch. But Reggie Bush looked faster Friday than I remember him looking in the past.
  • On pure speed alone, free-agent receiver Larry Beavers might have flashed the most speed on the team on a deep route during the afternoon session. But the Saints are deep at receiver and, despite his speed, Beavers probably needs to add a little bulk to have any shot at making the roster.
  • There was a lot made about the Saints being more aggressive on defense when coordinator Gregg Williams came in last year. He had his players chasing loose balls and constantly trying to poke the ball loose from offensive players. Doesn’t look like Williams’ message has changed a bit and that’s a positive.
  • I’ll be back with more Saturday. By the way, the Saturday morning session, which starts at 10:15 CT, is scheduled to be open to the public.

Saints add three WRs

May, 13, 2010
5/13/10
7:12
PM ET
The New Orleans Saints, who already have one of the league’s deepest group of wide receivers, made it even deeper Thursday.

The Saints signed three receivers -- Larry Beavers, Roy Hall and Andy Tanner. None are big names, but they could compete for a roster spot behind the likes of Marques Colston, Robert Meachem, Devery Henderson and Lance Moore.

Hall is the most experienced of the bunch. He came into the league as a fifth-round draft pick by Indianapolis in 2007. But injuries have limited him to only seven career games. Beavers spent last preseason with the Carolina Panthers and Tanner is an undrafted rookie from Midwestern State. Tanner was signed after trying out during last week’s rookie camp.

The Saints also released defensive tackle Rodney Leisle, who spent most of last season on the injured reserve list.

Panthers announce moves

September, 5, 2009
9/05/09
6:43
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Posted by ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinskas


I’ll be back in a bit with team-by-team analysis of cut-down day. The Panthers were the final team to announce their moves.

They placed rookie defensive tackle Corvey Irvin on the injured-reserve list and terminated the contracts of offensive lineman Justin Geisinger and Kevin Kaesviharn.

Carolina also waived receiver Larry Beavers, running back DeCori Birmingham, defensive lineman Casper Brinkley, offensive lineman Patrick Brown, quarterback Hunter Cantwell, receiver Jason Cherry, safety Paul Chiara, defensive back DJ Clark, tight end Andrew Davie, defensive tackle Marlon Favorite, defensive back Joe Fields, offensive lineman, Keith Gray, linebacker Anthony Heygood, defensive tackle George Hypolite, linebacker Mortty Irvin, running back Jamall Lee, linebacker Jeremy Leman, receiver Kevin McMahan, receiver Marcus Monk, offensive lineman Jonathan Palmer and linebacker Kelvin Smith.

Posted by ESPN.com staff

Atlanta Falcons

  • More praise for the Falcons for what they did during the offseason to improve the roster.
  • Mark Bradley of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution is viewing all these positive vibes as "a very bad sign" for the Falcons.
Carolina Panthers
  • He didn't know it at the time, but a position change in college has given rookie Larry Beavers a shot at the NFL.
New Orleans Saints
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • The Tampa Tribune's Anwar Richardson offers this list of players the Bucs should consider signing, along with players the team should ignore.
  • Gary Shelton of the St. Petersburg Times says former Bucs linebacker Derrick Brooks is too good to be sitting on the sideline when the season begins.

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