After Further Review: Five takes from Saints practice #9

Michael Thomas (13) and Jameis Winston (2) at practice.
Michael Thomas (13) and Jameis Winston (2) at practice.(Edwin Goode)
Published: Aug. 5, 2022 at 4:43 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Take One: Thomas takes over one-on-ones

Michael Thomas keeps adding more to his plate during this training camp. On Friday, Thomas did some one-on-one work for the first time in camp, and completely took it over.

Thomas only had two reps, but that was all that he needed. On his first one, Thomas was up against Paulson Adebo, a player that’s dominated these drills all camp. Thomas ran an out route, and was very physical with his hands at the top of his break. Adedo wasn’t ready for Thomas’ strength and was no match. Thomas made the reception with ease.

His second rep was also against Adebo, this time Thomas ran a square-in. Once again, Thomas was physical, and created great separation to make the catch.

Thomas also had two catches during the seven-on-seven session. On his second reception, he ran a fade, but then broke it off and turned at the goal line. Andy Dalton fired a pass to him for a touchdown.

At this point, Thomas looks completely healthy. Dennis Allen said he will be able to do the full team periods ‘pretty soon.’

Take Two: Tony Jones, Jr. stacking days

The competition at running back behind Alvin Kamara has become one of the more intriguing battles of training camp now that Tony Jones Jr. has strung together a couple of nice practices this week.

On Friday, he scored twice on two receptions. His first was the play of day and simply a thing of beauty. It came during the second team period when Andy Dalton connected with him on a wheel route. Jones beat Eric Wilson on the route. The route, placement, and catch were all flawless.

His second touchdown came in the final team period in red zone, when he and Dalton timed and executed a screen perfectly to score.

Jones has already had a few big runs where he broke free for huge gains in camp, but struggled last week with drops in the passing game. To bounce back so strongly this week is an encouraging sign.

Take Three: Other Top Plays

Bradley Roby opened up the one-on-ones with an interception off Dalton. Roby had fantastic coverage on Jarvis Landry. Kirk Merritt had a phenomenal catch during the same drill, when he made a contested grab on Adebo.

Speaking of Landry, he had a quality day of work. During the second team period, Jameis Winston connected with him on an over route near the goal line. Landry also scored a touchdown to close out the day on a pass from Ian Book.

During the first team period, Carl Granderson used an incredible spin move to beat James Hurst to sack Winston. Granderson has had a nice camp thus far.

Winston responded two plays after that sack by connecting with Tre’Quan Smith in the middle of the field for a double-digit gain.

In the next team session, Winston nearly connected with Juwan Johnson for a touchdown, but Johnson couldn’t quite reel it in. The ball wasn’t perfect but was catchable.

In the final red zone team period, Dalton also connected with Devine Ozigbo for a touchdown on an angle route.

During that same period, Kentavius Street had a couple of nice reps. He had a tackle for loss on Ozigbo, then he hit Book’s arm as he was attempted a pass to force an incompletion.

Take Four: Participation Report

Taysom Hill and Rashid Shaheed did not practice, but were spotted working with a trainer off to the side.

Defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson, cornerback Marshon Lattimore, linebacker D’Marco Jackson, tackle Jerald Hawkins, and defensive lineman Jaleel Johnson all did not practice.

Take Five: Other Observations

- Tyrann Mathieu did some seven-on-seven work Friday, his most extensive work to date.

- We probably haven’t talked enough about Wil Lutz. The veteran kicker has looked phenomenal and crushed all of his attempts in the rain. Lutz is now 19/20 so far in camp.

- Landon Young did most of the first team work at right tackle. Tanoh Kpassagnon received some first team reps at defensive end.

- Newly signed linebacker Kiko Alonso was with the team wearing No. 47.

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