June 6, 2012; Metairie, LA, USA; A general view during a New Orleans Saints minicamp session at the team's practice facility. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE
Mike Detillier of the Daily Comet attended almost all the OTA and Minicamp sessions that the New Orleans Saints opened to the media this year, and posted this column/article/notebook of "impress-ions". (By the end of this post, you'll see why this word is broken up and in quotes.)
After the jump you'll find my bullet-style summations of his observations, organized by groups for your convenience.
I'll open with his ridiculously early and @BOLD@ outlook for the 2012 season...
I am convinced today, as I was before the sessions started, that the road to the NFC South title will again pass through New Orleans as long as quarterback Drew Brees stays healthy for the entire 2012 season.
And now, on to the aforementioned groups:
Group # 1: Returning Veterans
- TE Jimmy Graham is crowned the second best player on the team (behind a certain unsigned FA QB).
- WR Marques Colston looks healthy and is his Minicamp MVP.
- 2nd-year WR Joe Morgan (coming off a 2011 season-ending knee injury) was lauded for his improved route running and potential to replace Devery Henderson and return kicks.
- Johnny Patrick also impressed Detillier.
Group # 2: New Veterans
- LB Curtis Lofton performed as the "new leader" of the Saints defense and seems to be "everything he was billed before he came here."
- He also found LB David Hawthorne to have been "impressive in camp".
Group # 3: The Rookies
- WRs Nick Toon and Chris Givens have impressed Detillier so far.
- Also impressive: RB Travaris Cadet, who has been getting extra reps with Mark Ingram and Chris Ivory missing time due to injuries.
- He likes the fluidity and movement skills of OT Marcel Jones, and...
- ...feels both Jones and DT Akiem Hicks pass "the eyeball test" and he is very interested in seeing them in full contact and preseason games.
- He notes that Corey White is a "big, very physical cornerback who impresses with his speed, his very quick footwork and his ability to find the ball in flight."
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Now, I open the floor to you, my CSC friends. Are you on board with the Road to the NFC South title rolling right through New Orleans? Did any of you locals go to all or part of these sessions in person? If so, please dish!