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Key observations from New Orleans Saints Training Camp: Day 15

Former LSU Tiger Darrel Williams joins the team

Full coverage of the New Orleans Saints workouts during 2023 Training Camp presented by Rouses Markets on Tuesday, August 15.

1. New Faces: Just prior to practice No. 15 of New Orleans Saints training camp it was announced the team had terminated the contract of wide receiver James Washington and had signed running back and former LSU Tiger Darrel Williams. A Marrero native and John Ehret High School product, Williams was undrafted but signed a free agent contract with the Kansas Cirty Chiefs. Williams has 15 touchdowns in his NFL career and is known to be a good pass catcher out of the backfield. Coach Dennis Allen mentioned post practice that Williams was someone who had been in the league a while and was a solid player and they wanted to see what he could do. Williams was immediately in uniform for practice Tuesday (wearing No. 34) and actually made a catch out of the backfield during 11-on-11 drills in the left flat from Jameis Winston. With the running back depth down a bit with the injuries to Eno Benjamin and now Kendre Miller, look for Williams to see plenty of reps the next couple of weeks during joint practices with the Chargers and the Texans.

2. Building Chemistry: Tight end Juwan Johnson has had an OUTSTANDING training camp. Every day it seems he makes a big play or at least a chunk play. In the preseason game against the Chiefs, Johnson had two catches for 29 yards in the Saints first drive that resulted in a touchdown. Saints quarterback Derek Carr has mentioned to the media that he has been impressed with Johnson's ability and as the days go on, it appears the trust factor is there as well. On Tuesday's indoor late afternoon practice, Johnson was targeted MULTIPLE times. Unofficially I had him with five catches both on 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills. What makes Johnson so dangerous is the ability to run for big yards after making the catch. His conversion from wide receiver has certainly benefitted him and the team as he is poised to have a big season.

3. Play of the Day: Continuing the theme of Johnson big plays, this came at the end of the Saints situational two-minute drill. With Carr at quarterback, he moved the ball down the field (helped by a 20-yard pass to Johnson with 35 seconds left) to the 9-yard line with seven seconds left on the clock. Time for MAYBE two plays. That would not be the way it would shake out though. As the ball was snapped, Carr was protected well, but during that the clock melted away…this would be the final play, do or die. Carr uncorked one over the middle to the very back of the end zone when a sprinting Johnson came into sight racing from right to left. Johnson made the catch for the touchdown as the clock read 0:00 and the white jerseyed offensive group celebrated. The team would set up for a two-point conversion and Carr handed off to Alvin Kamara right up the gut for the points, exclaiming "YESSIR!" as Kamara crossed the goal line.