Saints Training Camp: Day Two Recap

Today is a lot more active for the Saints. They now have draft picks Martez Wilson and Mark Ingram signed and ready to go, although it seems secondary depth is still an issue until veteran free agents can report to camp. I have a lot of videos in store for you from many people around Saints camp. As well, I've got some transcripts from Mark Ingram, Darren Sproles, and Scott Shanle. So make sure you go ahead and read on to see how day two of training camp went!



WWL-TV Sports
Larry Holder


New Orleans Saints training camp schedule, updated 07.30.11 |
Today's workout starts at 8:50 a.m.

Secondary depth an issue until free agents report to camp | New Orleans
Malcolm Jenkins looked to his side Friday and saw No. 46, not No. 41. DeAndre McDaniel, not Roman Harper. He looked to his right and saw Patrick Robinson, not Tracy Porter.

Sproles' Main Focus: "Have Fun and Make Plays"



Scott Shanle

Is it weird not being able to get out on the field?
"Yes.  It’s not like we are standing out here for one day or two days, it’s more like a week.  A lot of it is mental reps which are still hard because it’s been so long since we had physical reps, but you just want to get out there and run around."
Even though they recertified the union today, you still can’t practice until August 4th?
"Yes.  We still have to wait till August 4th."
I know the St. Louis Rams were hot and heavy on you.  What made it fit here for you?
"Early in the process, the Rams showed a lot of interest.  I also talked to the Bengals.  But in the end, the two teams it came down to were the Saints and the Chiefs.  The Chiefs came in at the end, and obviously I have a great relationship with coach Gary Gibbs who I played with in Dallas before.  It’s close to home and it was really worth my consideration, but when I sat down and talked to my wife, we went back and forth.  I weighed the positives and the negatives, and the positives just kept piling up to stay with the New Orleans Saints.  It really wasn’t a hard decision."
Talk about the linebacker position this season.  Are you just going to focus on the strong side?
"Actually, I don’t know.  The way coaches Gregg Williams and Joe Vitt go about it is that they are going to put their three best players on the field.  They don’t care who lines up where.  I would envision them to do that again.  You have to let this abbreviated preseason training camp play itself out and find out where everyone is going to fit."
What do you expect from Jonathan Casillas this season?
"He was a young player last year that was having a great training camp and was earning himself a position on the weak side.  Unfortunately, he lost the season to an injury.  I’m looking for him to pick that back up, and if he can do that he will be a contributor this year."
Did any of your teammates try to reach out to you while you were going through this process?
"Yes.  I think anytime you go through this process and other people catch wind of your talk about other teams and a chance you could leave.  I have so many great relationships here, not only with linebackers and defensive players but I go back with guys like Devery Henderson because I’ve been here with him since ’06, Drew (Brees), and Pierre (Thomas).  It feels good to see them excited that I came back."


Darren Sproles:

Why was New Orleans the right fit for you? I felt that it was the right fit for me. I saw the way they were using Reggie (Bush) so I felt this was the right place for me.
How do you address the comparisons to Reggie Bush? I just want to come in here, have fun, and make plays. That’s my main focus.
How did Drew Brees influence your decision to come to New Orleans? We had worked out together throughout the spring. He kept telling me the whole spring it is where I needed to be.
Is it easier coming to play with someone you have experience with? Coming somewhere new, you want to know somebody just to show you the ropes and stuff like that.
Did you think you could end up here before Reggie Bush was traded? I kind of sensed it, but I wasn’t sure yet.

How does it feel to have your deal done?

I am excited. It’s what I have been waiting for my whole life. I am going to have the opportunity to play pro football. I am excited to be here and to be a part of such a great organization like the Saints. I am really excited.

What are the challenges in entering your first practice in the month of August?

I am just getting in and learning everything. Learning the system, the tempo, practice and what we do at practice, learning where to be and where to go, just learning a new system and being part of a new team. I am excited about all of it. I am excited to be out here, learning the plays, and to be a Saint.

At the end of the day, is this still just football?

It’s the pros. It’s the best players in the world playing football right now. I just have to go out there and learn the plays. You still play with a brown ball. You still play on a field that is 100 yards long. You still have two end-zones. You still have to run the ball and throw it. You still have to play and there is still football.

Did you feel familiar when Drew (Brees) and the coaches were discussing plays?

I know some of the basic things just from being out there with Drew. Some of the other guys are also helping me with the terminology. I definitely still have a lot to learn. I have a ways to go. I am going to work hard in the film room. I am going to spend extra time studying the plays and knowing what I have to do out there so I can just go out and play and I don’t have to think so much.

What are your feelings on Reggie (Bush) being traded and the team bringing in Darren Sproles?

I am just excited to be a part of the team. My main focus coming in to camp is to go out here, work my butt off, and do whatever I can to help the team be the best team we can be and win games. That has been my main focus. Anything else, I can’t control it. I am excited to be and excited to get going.

Are you surprised that Reggie is no longer with the Saints?

Like I said, I had no control over what happened. My main focus was to be in the best shape possible coming in to camp, work my butt off, and help the team win.

Was jersey #28 an easy choice?

The options were 28, 34, and 32. I was trying to get 22 from Tracy (Porter) for a while but I gave up. 28 is a special number to me. I was picked 28, my dad was picked 28. He wore 82 when he played in the pros. It has a deeper meaning than that, so I am happy with the number and it has a meaning to me. That’s good.

How anxious are you to go through a full practice?

I just came out here and watched today. I went through everything  and it’s good. Now, I’m here full go and I’m ready to practice.



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