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Why Saints WR Michael Thomas can live up to the hype

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There’s so many options to choose from when it comes to Saints players to be excited about this season. So, who made the top cut?

New Orleans Saints v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The New Orleans Saints are inching closer to training camp, which means we’re not far off from preseason action. More importantly, it means we’re almost ‘back to football’. Needless to say, the expectations fans have for Sean Payton’s squad in 2017 seem to echo a ‘playoffs or bust’ mentality. Despite some early injury blows, there’s plenty of reasons to be excited about the new Saints season and its players.

I took to Twitter to get some feedback from fans in regards to who they’re most excited about for the new season, and wide receiver Michael Thomas took down the most popular choice on the poll.

It’s hardly surprising, as Thomas had an outstanding rookie campaign - some of the best stats for a rookie receiver in Saints history to be exact. Thomas’ receptions (92), yardage (1,137), and touchdowns (9) were all franchise records set by the Ohio State product. Had Thomas played in the one game missed in 2016, he could have arguably broken the all-time rookie reception record set by Anquan Boldin in 2003.

With Brandin Cooks out of the equation for Drew Brees, there’s little to no doubt that Thomas is the ‘top dog’ in New Orleans. He’ll have big expectations for the new season, but his rookie season showed us how in sync he was with the offensive attack. Thomas will headline a very underrated receiving corps, with Willie Snead and Ted Ginn Jr. as the early favorites for the Top 3.

Not to be forgotten, the ‘someone else’ column did produce some interesting responses. Alvin Kamara and Adrian Peterson were among the most popular answers, but others like the rookie class (Marshon Lattimore and Marcus Williams mainly) were also big responses. Second-year players like defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins and safety Vonn Bell also received some love.

So, who are you most excited about in 2017 and why?