Photos of Saints OTA practice on June 2, 2016. Photos by Alex Restrepo. New Orleans Saints photos.
The New Orleans Saints completed their second set of OTA sessions this week, the third session is scheduled for next week and minicamp will occur the week after that. In other words, we're nearing a break and then off to training camp. Keep the questions coming, and we'll do our best to answer.
@burchett_tyler: Do you anticipate Michael Thomas beating out Brandon Coleman for a starting receiver role? Do Saints use many four-receiver looks?
JD:No, but that doesn't mean Thomas won't play a lot or contribute significantly as a rookie. He'll probably be in the receiving rotation and already has shown his football IQ in that he's not repeating the same mistakes. But Coleman is entering his third season with the Saints, he's a huge target who likely is scratching the surface on learning how to use his huge frame, and he was productive down the stretch last season (16 catches for 231 yards and a touchdown in the last five games). There'll be some four-receiver sets, but the need for that is minimized with the presence of tight end Coby Fleener and running back C.J. Spiller.
@datwhodat1965: It seems as though the NFL is hosting the most recent Super Bowls in cities with new facilities. Should we build a new dome?
JD:True, and no. Yes, franchises and cities recently have been rewarded for constructing new facilities (Minnesota, Atlanta and New York come to mind). But the Mercedes-Benz Superdome remains a state-of-the-art facility, and the city of New Orleans remains a premier big-event site and host. I suppose every team could build a new stadium and New Orleans could continue to be overlooked in the Super Bowl chase, but I'm more inclined to believe that the arms race will level and that New Orleans again will be rewarded for being a premier event city.
@HuddlestonTashy: When will we be getting training camp info?
JD:Last year, the training camp schedule was released the second week in June. There's no guarantee that the timetable will remain the same, but that's when I'd start looking for it.
@PaulNOLA9: This time next year, who do you think will prove to be the best offseason addition to the Saints?
JD:If you're asking which player from this year will we look back on next year and consider the best offseason addition, I'll nominate linebacker James Laurinaitis. He'll take over the duties at middle linebacker, which allows Stephone Anthony to move to Sam linebacker, and his veteran presence and leadership and smarts should benefit a defense that can use an infusion of all three.
@Anthony01619735: What is Drew Brees going to do this season? Do they have a chance of winning 10 games this year?
JD:Brees will pass for another 4,700-plus yards and 30-plus touchdowns, pretty much the status quo for a guy who doesn't appear to be slowing down. And yes, the Saints have a chance to win 10. If the defense is improved in the slightest – and mostly, the improvement has to be made in points allowed – then the Saints will be better because rarely has the problem been that New Orleans can't score enough.
@alleycat_88: Who's your darkhorse sleeper this year? I like Davis Tull or Trae Elson.
JD:Again, a little early for me on the prognostications, but I'll play along: cornerback P.J. Williams. He sat out his rookie season with an injury, but he plays a position where he'll be on the field and will have a chance to contribute in the sub packages. He was a third-round pick last year, so he has ability. He'll get a chance to show it this year.