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Saints RB Alvin Kamara getting some work in with the wide receivers

The Saints seem eager to get Kamara the ball in the passing game more often.

NFL: New Orleans Saints Training Camp Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara has been getting some work in with the Saints wide receivers in training camp. The Saints seem eager to get Kamara involved more in the passing game.

The past two seasons, we’ve seen Kamara’s receiving production dip drastically. His first four seasons in the NFL, Kamara caught between 81-83 balls and eclipsed 700 yards every season but 2019 (he had 533 yards), but since then he’s been held to 47 and 57 catches and less than 500 yards each of the past two seasons.

One obvious reason for this drop off was the departure of Drew Brees. Kamara was one of Brees’ favorite targets because of his ability to break tackles and gain yards after the catch. But there are other reasons for his drop off that have been overlooked.

In 2017 and 2018, Kamara and Mark Ingram formed one of the best one-two punches in the entire league. After Ingram moved on to the Ravens and Texans for two and a half, the Saints brought in Latavius Murray and others to carry Ingrams load. Kamara had never once had to carry the ball more than 194 times in a single season before 2020, but since the Saints reacquired Ingram that season, he wasn’t as efficient on the ground as he had been before.

Having another workload back allowed Kamara to play more of a role as a pass catching back, but since 2020, Kamara has been forced to take on a more ground-heavy role. In 2021 and 2022, Kamara ran the ball 240 and 223 times respectively. This not only takes away from his snaps as a receiver, but it puts more wear and tear on his body.

After a lackluster 2022 campaign, the Saints seemed adamant on adding depth and youth to their backfield. They did so by signing Jamaal Williams and drafting Kendre Miller. Now that the Saints have two more viable running backs on the roster, Kamara should be able to go back to his former pass catching self.

His work with the receivers in camp gives him more opportunities to work with Derek Carr and learn how he likes to operate. As long as Williams and Miller stay healthy, we should be able to see the Kamara of old whenever he returns to the field.

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