Notes and observations from the New Orleans Saints' minicamp practice Wednesday.
Attendance: Cam Jordan and Michael Thomas were not spotted.
Limited: Tre’quan Smith, Cam Meredith, Brandon Coleman, Deon Yelder, Daniel Lasco, Trey Hendrickson, Alex Okafor, Marcus Davenport
Different pace: After having a lot of team periods and action to follow during Tuesday’s practice, Wednesday’s session looked a little different. There were periods spent walking through some running plays and a lot of time on kickoffs. The team only had one team period where all the quarterbacks received reps. The practice ended with Drew Brees leading a two-minute period.
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Special teams: The way on the team for a lot of players will be through special teams, so it is important to pay attention to who is getting reps with the various units. It’s too soon to handicap anything, but it is notable that guys like wide receiver Travin Dural, cornerback Arthur Maulet, running back Trey Edmunds and defensive back J.T. Gray all got work on the kick return team. Josh Huff, Boston Scott, Ted Ginn, Alvin Kamara and Tommylee Lewis all returned kicks.
Wil Lutz and Thomas Morstead both attempted onside kicks. The team also had a period where it attempted hurry-up field goals.
Linebacker swap: It’s always good to remember that where guys line up during this stage of the summer is mostly meaningless. Some receivers who received first-team reps on Tuesday were catching passing from J.T. Barrett today. The same is true at linebacker. Manti Te’o and Alex Anzalone received the first-team reps on Tuesday, while Demario Davis and A.J. Klein were with the second team. None of it means anything right now.
Team notes: Taysom Hill looked sharper today after struggling a little bit during Tuesday’s practice. His best play, however, was when he tucked the ball and ran for a big gain.
Barrett’s turn at quarterback was most notable for defensive plays. De’Vante Harris broke up a deep pass intended for Josh Smith, who is trying out. Hardee also broke up a pass intended for Paul Turner, though the pass might have been a little behind the receiver.
Hau’oli Kikaha sacked Tom Savage. Jonathan Williams then dropped the ensuing pass. Savage connected on a pass to Smith and then skied one over Turner.
The most active portion of practice was the two-minute drill to end the day. Brees connected passes to Dural, Kamara, Ben Watson, Kamara again and Josh Hill before being sacked by Jayrone Elliott. Safety Kurt Coleman was then flagged for pass interference to move the ball further down the field. Brees then connected with Mark Ingram on a screen to score a touchdown.
Play of the day: Only one real contender today, and the honor goes to Marcus Williams for flying over from the middle of the field to knock down a deep pass to Lewis. Williams makes it look easy back there.