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Saints linebackers coach Mike Nolan touts Alex Anzalone

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

Nolan was asked about the value he has in two starters who can play any linebacker spot, between Demario Davis and A.J. Klein. But Nolan pointed out that the Saints run deep at the position beyond those two top-level players, with Craig Robertson slotting in as a valuable backup and Anzalone continuing to stand out.

“I think it’s coming along well,” Nolan said of Anzalone’s progress. “Alex wears more hats than anyone else at the linebacker position. What I mean by that is he plays all three positions, and he’ll practice at two of the three. A lot of times guys will back up at another position but they don’t get much reps at it, they stay on top of it by studying. Whereas Alex has had to do all three positions and has done a real good job with it.”

The big problem Anzalone has had to deal with throughout his career — going back to his college days with the Florida Gators — was his health. He suffered a broken arm and slow-to-heal shoulder injuries that cost him playing time throughout college, and cut short his rookie season with the Saints.

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

How long will Drew Brees be Saints QB? 'As long as he wants to play,' GM Mickey Loomis says

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By Staff | The Advocate

Drew Brees is a 40-year-old NFL quarterback -- that in and of itself is a rare feat.

And while there seems to be no dropoff in his Saints production after his 18th NFL season, even GM Mickey Loomis said it's really unknown how long the 12-time Pro Bowler could keep playing.

“It’s a good question,” Loomis said Monday on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports Radio in response to a question from host Adam Schein.

“I would say that for most people he’s already exceeded whatever number was anticipated. Certainly that’s true with Tom Brady as well."

Brady, 41, is the only other NFL quarterback currently beyond the 40 mark. Brees celebrated his 40th birthday during the divisional round of the NFL playoffs in January.

Full Story - The Advocate

New Orleans Saints Triumphs: Drew Brees becomes the single season passing king

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"Move over Marino, there's a Brees coming through the door" - Jim Henderson (Dec 26, 2011)

By Bob Rose | Canal Street Chronicles

Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino set a single season landmark of passing yardage that many thought unthinkable during the 1984 season. Marino passed for 5.084 yards, (along with 48 touchdowns) during the '84 campaign, besting the previous mark of 4,802 set in 1981 by Dan Fouts of the San Diego Chargers. The 5,000 yard plateau was one that no one thought possible, and many believed that it may never occur again. Marino himself, for all of his passing achievements, would only come as close as 254 yards away in 1986, his second most prolific season. More than two decades would go by after Marino's record breaking season, and only 10 quarterbacks had seasons of over 4,500 yards passing during that period, with no one breaking the hallowed 5,000-yd. mark. It would be 24 years before another quarterback, another all-time great, would eclipse this elusive barrier.

Drew Brees joined the New Orleans Saints as a free agent in 2006...

Saints happy with Erik McCoy's progress, eager to test him further

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

It was very likely that Erik McCoy would be a rookie starter once the New Orleans Saints traded up to get him in the 2019 NFL Draft. Now, weeks out from training camp, it almost feels inevitable. The Texas A&M product is already making positive impressions on the people who matter most as he seeks to replace Max Unger: Sean Payton and Drew Brees.

McCoy initially split practice reps at center with third-year backup Cameron Tom during organized team activities and minicamp; free agent signee Nick Easton filled in for right guard Larry Warford, who was held out while managing an injury. But McCoy rarely missed a snap during the final two weeks of practice sessions, or at least those open to the media.

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

New Orleans Saints 2019 Rushing Offense Outlook

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By Ashley Murray | LWOS

The New Orleans Saints have consistently been an offensive powerhouse. In 2005, the Saints suffered one of their worst seasons in history, finishing with a record of 3-13. This disastrous season led to inevitable huge changes being made, including the firing of coach Jim Haslett. The following year, Sean Payton was named head coach and quarterback Drew Brees signed with the Saints as a free agent. The team finished the 2006 season with it being their most successful to date, making it all to the NFC Championship for the first time in franchise history. But even that success could not have prepared fans for what was to come.

Under coach Payton, for the past 13 seasons, the Saints have finished as a top 10 team in terms of overall offense, placing in the top three for nine of...

Which veteran player could the New Orleans Saints cut?

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By James Parks | 247 Sports

It’s been a while since we’ve seen Cameron Meredith on the field, and if things don’t turn around quickly, we may not see him in a New Orleans Saints uniform again.

That is, according to the analysis of ESPN, who in a recent study predicted which veteran players could find themselves the victim of a roster cut before the season begins.

“Meredith agreed to a pay cut to stay with the team in March. But that won’t be enough unless he finally gets healthy and starts producing on the practice field,” ESPN noted in their analysis.

“Meredith missed all of OTAs and minicamp to keep recuperating from the knee injury that wiped out his entire 2017 season with the Bears and limited him to just six games in New Orleans last year. The plan is to be smart and cautious so he can be healthy in training camp and last the full season. But he’ll have to make up ground quickly this summer to solidify a role.”

Full Story - 247 Sports

New Orleans Saints linebacker Alex Anzalone dogged in his desire to assist ARNO

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John DeShazier | Senior Writer - NewOrleansSaints.com

The interactions were, in a word, “golden.”

Alex Anzalone smiled easily, laughed genuinely and operated dutifully while he nuzzled, hugged and steered. The dogs with which he was being photographed weren’t totally attentive to all commands, and perhaps that made the session at Animal Rescue New Orleans all the more adorable.

Imagine the New Orleans Saints’ 6-foot-3, 241-pound linebacker talking baby talk, trying to convince each of six dogs (in separate photo shoots) to look toward the camera, or sit still long enough to strike a pose, or not wriggle as he cradled them or, in one instance, held one up for a Simba-style presentation.

This isn’t the Anzalone that Saints fans are accustomed to seeing.

That guy – blonde hair flowing from beneath his helmet, almost lengthy enough to cover the name across the back of his jersey – doesn’t handle opponents with any measure of delicacy.

The fumbles he forced against two elite receivers in 2018 – pounding Minnesota’s Adam Thielen in the second quarter with New Orleans trailing 13-10, and walloping Atlanta’s Julio Jones in the second quarter while the Saints led 17-3 – were indicative of the level of wrath Anzalone can...

Saints GM Mickey Loomis coy on Michael Thomas contract talks

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

New Orleans Saints general manager Mickey Loomis rarely makes media appearances, but he recently had a guest spot on Mad Dog Sports Radio on Sirius XM Radio with host Adam Schein. Loomis hit on a few different points including the recent contract extension with defensive end Cameron Jordan, the next hurdle in wide receiver Michael Thomas (who will be a free agent next March), and his lessened impact on the New Orleans Pelicans — along with his thoughts on Anthony Davis’ status and the addition of presumptive first-overall NBA Draft pick Zion Williamson.

However, Loomis wasn’t about to break any big news. When asked whether anything was brewing between Thomas and the Saints on a potential extension (which may average as much as $20 million per year), Loomis downplayed the significance of their negotiations — but admitted that talks had started.

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

Drew Brees: Saints offense fits Teddy Bridgewater very well

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees is one of the most-established names in the NFL, having led the Saints since 2006 and helped fill highlight reels for even longer than that. He’s also very aware of the situation around him, and took some time during media availability following Saints minicamp practices to comment on the progress of Teddy Bridgewater, his understudy and backup.

“He came in right before the season,” Brees said, noting that the timing of the trade that brought Bridgewater to New Orleans cost him most of the offseason. “So (there was) a big learning curve, you’re jumping right into a regular season with the new offense and a lot of new things. I think our coaches, him, they have all looked forward to this offseason where he could get a lot of reps and a lot of time under his belt and there is no doubt he’s an extremely talented guy.”

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

Details on Cameron Jordan's contract extension with Saints

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

Before signing this new contract, Jordan’s 2019 salary cap hit was one of the highest on the team, clocking in at $14.047 million. Now, it’s been reduced to just $9.547 million — freeing up valuable cap space and putting the Saints at $11,714,543 beneath the spending ceiling, per the latest report from the NFL Players Association.

In future years, Jordan’s cap numbers will climb to $15.947 million (in 2020), $17.5 million (in 2021), $18.3 million (in 2022), and $18 million (in 2023). Given his quality level of play and the importance he has to the team, and it’s very possible that he sees every penny of those numbers throughout his Saints career.

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

Former LSU Tiger, Saints backup C/G Will Clapp will fight for spot in 2019

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Former LSU Tigers center/guard Will Clapp was a seventh-round draft pick by the Saints in 2018. He made the team last year but this year he’s in for a fight.

By Roy Anderson | WhoDatDish

The people of Louisiana always love it when the Saints draft a player out of LSU. It doesn’t hurt when it’s a kid like Will Clapp who is also a native of New Orleans and a graduate of Brother Martin High School.

We’re breaking down the entire 90-man roster the Saints will be taking into training camp this year, first with an overview by position group and then by individual players. We started the series with a breakdown of the receivers, followed by the tight ends, then the running backs and lastly, the offensive line.

We began our focus on the 15 linemen in camp competing for nine jobs with a look at...

Saints RB Alvin Kamara still looking to 'prove' himself

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By Adam Maya | NFL.com

Sean Payton once gifted his Tasmanian tailback Alvin Kamara with a fidget spinner. Apparently, because Kamara can do so many things on the football field, he gets restless sometimes if he's not doing enough off it.

"He has real, real, exceptionally high football IQ, so he can get bored with it," Payton explained, per the team's official website. "That is why we give him one of those little fidget things you twist when you can't pay attention."

Kamara will surely be tasked to do more for the Saints in Year 3 now that former running mate Mark Ingram is with the Ravens. What exactly his workload entails should be one of the league's more interesting storylines this season. Payton said he had sort of an epiphany earlier this week when Kamara switched practices jerseys with quarterback Teddy Bridgewater...

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