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Sep

07

GEARING UP FOR DETROIT

The Saints began their first regular season workweek indoors in shells and shorts. Head coach Sean Payton is hoping to take advantage of the bonus day this week, usually on Mondays the team just reviews game film and players receive treatments.

 

GEARING UP FOR DETROIT

 

The Saints on Sunday kick off a highly anticipated season that has many fans predicting late January football.

 

Detroit is looking to win its first game since 2007. The Lions went 0-16 last season, the first team to go winless in NFL history.

 

It didn’t take long for Saints head coach Sean Payton on Monday to be asked if he thought his team might overlook the Lions this week, in advance of next week’s Eagles game at Philadelphia. “We have players that are pretty intelligent and they understand that they need to play well to have a chance to be successful,” Payton said in his media session Monday afternoon. “This league is too good. It’s not like college where you look past someone. Every week you prepare and you focus on playing your best game regardless of who the opponent is. This is an entirely different team than a year ago when you look at the roster, the coaching staff, and the make up, it’s completely different. So the focus is really on us and playing our best football, eliminating mistakes and things that keep you from winning.”

 

Early odds have the Saints favored by 13 points. That line was before the Lions named Mathew Stafford, the top overall pick of the 2009 NFL Draft, as their starting quarterback, a move announced late Monday morning.

 

Stafford had his moments in the preseason showing off a strong arm, but also showed the usually rookie mistakes. “He’s a tremendous talent so he’s someone that you saw a lot on Georgia film do a lot of good things,” Payton said of the former Bulldog QB, whose play in the preseason as well will be used to prepare for.

 

PLAN IS FOR GRANT AND SMITH TO PLAY

 

Starting defensive ends Charles Grant and Will Smith practiced today as the NFL has yet to formally suspend them as their appeals have yet to be ruled on. “Right now our focus is playing them in this game until we’re told otherwise,” Payton said of the team’s approach to having them available. Typically the NFL doesn’t announce possible suspensions or moves that would put a team at a disadvantage by providing decisions early in the week. Payton feels tomorrow would be the day the league would inform him if both players were not allowed to play this Sunday.

 

“We’re waiting to hear from the league that’s really the proper channel. The League will keep us up to date and advised as to how to proceed, and right now we’re proceeding with the idea that these two players are playing,” Payton said.

 

BUSH BACK, PIERRE NOT

 

Running back Reggie Bush was back on the practice field for the Black and Gold, while Pierre Thomas was not seen at the facility. Payton said he would wait until Wednesday, the first day the NFL mandates teams to report injuries, to update the status of Thomas. Thomas suffered a sprain MCL against the Texans in preseason.

 

BUMPS AND BRUISES

 

CB Randall Gay was held out of practice of the flu.

 

Thanks Gus for another great story.

 

PS…   http://www.gkattsports.com/  is looking great !

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