From West Virginia back to New Orleans, the Saints say they're well prepared for the difference in climate this summer during practice.
“It's not a big change because we train here in the off-season,” says head coach Sean Payton. “And we've had training camp here before. We're all creatures of habit. Very quickly, in the next three days, we'll be into a routine.”
But that doesn't mean the Louisiana heat won't present its challenges. Payton says it's vital not to overwork anyone, but in particular, positions where they're already thin, like the offensive line and veteran right tackle Zach Strief.
“It is important that there's a handful of guys that we discussed prior to training camp on kind of a limited list, if you will, where the third day, you might back off their reps,” says Payton. “Zach would be one of those players, clearly.”
And that said, the best way to monitor the team's condition may be simpler than you think.
“It was said to me once that you pay attention to the guy that's on the best shape on the roster, and when he's tired, certainly the others are,” says Payton. “I think we do a pretty good job of adapting to different environments.”
But when it comes to one of the oldest players on the roster, Saints fans don’t have to worry. At 38 years old, quarterback Drew Brees rocked his conditioning test, according to his head coach. Payton says he finished in the top two on the team.
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