The Saints held their first open OTA session to the media on Thursday, and we were able to get some good observations and notes from practice. Here's some notable quotes from the players.
On Smoke Monday: “He’s gonna be a good player in this league. He’s a physical player, great length and size, kid studies a lot.”
On Alontae Taylor: "He's just one of those guys that when you see him working and see him move, you can see his potential. He's one of those guys that get his hands on a lot of balls too. I think ball production is a big thing in this league."
On Marcus Maye: "The Saints did a good job, they put our locker room next to each other. He's one of those guys that's proven he can play. He's a guy that obviously I look forward to. He was kind of in a similar scheme in New York, so I think for him he's further along than I may be just with the terminology and language, but he's another guy that I can look to for help and get me through the playbook."
Saints OTAs - Thursday, May 26
On Tyrann Mathieu: "It's amazing man. It was awesome having him in KC. I was shooting him a couple of messages here and there, just trying to see where his head was at. You know, it's a process, free agency and stuff like that. I know everyone here's excited. I'm excited. That dude was a leader the day he stepped into KC and he's gonna do the same here."
Thoughts on two Co-Defensive Coordinators: "I feel like last year, a lot of the guys like Ryan (Nielsen) and Kris (Richard) had a big input on what we were doing defensively, so not much has changed."
On Dennis Allen: "He's a very particular person. He's very into the details. We saw that on the defensive side of things, so he's bringing that on to the whole team. And you see it with a lot of the little things."
What he's seen from Chris Olave: "Smooth as the other side of the pillow. He's just really smooth. He can get in and out of breaks very well. Electric and smart. He's a guy that's always asking questions. He's a guy that wants to know, 'How do you want it?', and I really respect that. He's a pro right now as a rookie, so I'm excited to see that."
On the brace: "So, right now the brace is mandatory being out there on the field, just for the beginning process. I am going to be wearing the brace with the season. I think everyone does that after ACL (injury), especially at the quarterback position. There's nothing limiting. There's nothing that really bothers you from that perspective. So, I'm commanding the brace now."
On the nature of his injury: "The biggest thing about my specific injury was the meniscus. It wasn't the ACL, MCL. The MCL actually healed on its own even before surgery, and the ACL Dr. Neal ElAttrache, he did a phenomenal job. He does these, he does these for his life. The meniscus repair has been the biggest limiter for me right now, in terms of moving, in terms of rolling out, in terms of certain movements that I'm not able to do just because of the timetable of the recovery. My ACL is very stable. My MCL is very stable. Right now, I'm building around and fighting with the meniscus."
On meniscus: "Right now, it isn't painful at all, I'm just following protocol. I still have to continue to work on my flexion and my range of motion, but the swelling is down. My range of motion is kind of similar to my right side, but it's just the feel. I just started running 'on the books' last week, so that's kind of been a process for me, just getting back the gate, getting back everything in a fluid motion."
On Year 3: "I'm able to really see and hone in on things we got to work on. There's some things you are doing well, there's some things you got to focus on. This offseason has been really fun for me. I know what it is I have to fix and work on, so I'm working with Coach Strief and Coach Marrone and really taking those things head on."
On Michael Thomas: "That's my guy. He's in here working hard. I know how he works, so I know he's working hard to get back. He's at it all day. He's been here for rehab and been chopping up with him when I see him."
On his return: "The goal has always been to be back for training camp. Of course, things can change week-to-week. If I get out there earlier, great. If not, just stay the course and get back for training camp."
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