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METAIRIE, La. -- Sounding contrite and determined to atone for his DUI, New Orleans Saints wide receiver Joe Morgan said he is working hard to win a starter's job in training camp while dealing with the fallout from his arrest over Memorial Day weekend.
Morgan said his actions on May 25 landed him in Stage 1 of the NFL's substance abuse program and likely will require him to undergo random testing under terms of the collective bargaining agreement.
His court date is set for Aug. 23.
In the meantime, Morgan is going about his business in training camp, battling Nick Toon, fifth-round draft pick Kenny Stills Jr., special teams captain Courtney Roby and others for the third spot on the depth chart behind veteran wide receivers Marques Colston and Lance Moore.
"I've put it behind me because the most important thing to me is football," Morgan said after a recent practice. "I can't say the arrest is not affecting me because I really can't be done with it until my court date, but I got to concentrate on football first."
The 25-year-old Morgan said team officials, coaches and teammates have been supportive since his arrest.
"But, at the same time, they understand and I understand, too, that this situation isn't peaches and cream," he said. "It isn't something that is acceptable, by no means at all. But they've been working with me. That's testimony to the type of character and the type of guys who are in this organization, not just players but the guys upstairs, too. They see something in me, so I'm not going to let them down."
What they see is 10 catches last season for a gaudy 37.9-yard average and three touchdowns in 14 games. It's that big-play potential as a down-field threat that probably sealed the fate of veteran wide receiver Devery Henderson in New Orleans.
"Joe's a good kid," Moore said. "People make mistakes. But he's bounced back and he's definitely going to show people the type of guy he is. ... He's become more of a professional and the thing that I'm encouraged about is that he wants to work and he's willing to work."