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New Orleans Saints say goodbye to bye, begin preparation for second half of season

Players relaxed, recuperated and Bridgewater stole a show during the break

teddy strut

Teddy did the SupaStrut in Miami, and no New Orleans Saints quarterback was injured during the making of the video (his back and spine are fine).

Cam stayed put, had a few date nights and helped nurse his kids to health from colds (the Jordan household checks in as healthy).

Terron had a birthday party for his twins (happy seventh for the Armstead duo), and caught himself practicing pass protection sets in the aisle at Walmart.

Definitely, New Orleans Saints players found ways to fill the time void during bye week, while they rested their bodies and recovered for this week's preparation to play Atlanta on Sunday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

"I was bored," Jordan confessed. "I stayed here for the first time. The kids were a little sick, cleared that up. Just made sure the body was right, made sure the mind was clear. And then, I guess by Wednesday or Thursday, it had only been about two days, I was like, 'All right, I'm ready for the season to kick back in.' (And) we had like, four more days left. That's what happens when you don't travel."

Those days have elapsed as the Saints (7-1), winners of six straight entering the bye, got back to work Monday with a practice.

"We had a bonus Monday," Jordan said. "Just glad to be back, glad to see everybody, feel like a little kid going back to school again. Overly happy to be back at work."

But it wasn't whistle-while-you-work work.

"We jumped in headfirst today," Armstead said. "Tough practice, if you ask me. We got after it, for sure. We hit the ground running. We competed at a high level."

The Saints figure they'll need to stay at that high level.

The Falcons (1-7) are the last-place team in the NFC South Division, and have lost six straight. Yet New Orleans considers Atlanta a dangerous opponent.

"I think it's most important to not pay attention to the record," Armstead said. "Understand that this is a team we play twice a year, we have great battles against. Talented, extremely talented team. An NFL organization, so you can't look at the record, or our record at all, either. We've got to go out there and win Sunday."

"When you talk about what we want to do this week, we've got a strong receiving corps coming in," Jordan said. "I know (receiver) Mo Sanu went over to the Pats (in a trade), (but they have) Calvin Ridley and Julio Jones. You've got (quarterback) Matt Ryan, who's putting up amazing numbers this year. (Running back) Devonta Freeman is healthy. That makes them dangerous, by far.

"Plus it's an in-season rivalry game, and all of your NFC South games are a battle. When you play somebody twice a year, you know year in and year out what they're going to bring to the table. It's going to be up to us to make them one-dimensional if possible."

The Falcons would strain to display as many dimensions as has Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who led the Saints to a 5-0 record as a starter during Drew Brees' injury and recovery from surgery.

The proud Northwestern (Miami) High alum added to his growing legend Friday night, when he strolled with the Dynamic Dozen dancers from his high school's band.

During the SupaStrut, the dancers leaned back to a nearly parallel posture with the ground, and Bridgewater wasn't far off, while performing the stroll. It has been a viral sensation.

Bridgewater said that what you saw was about all you were going to see from him.

"I gave it all I had," he said, smiling. "I couldn't have gone any further. That's why I had my hands in my jacket, to try to keep myself up.

"Those girls, man, it's impressive. I was talking with them at halftime and just watching them go over their routine. I was like, 'Man, how do you guys do it.' (The coordinator), she was just saying it's muscle memory. She was like, 'It's like playing football. You know, when you have to learn a new play and go out there and play.' I was like, nah, it's totally different. But it was fun."

Bridgewater said he vowed to his teammates – and all of his friends, for that matter – that he would join the Dynamic Dozen during their strut.

"I'm always bragging with (defensive back) J.T. Gray, we talk about our high schools' bands and things like that," he said. "And our dancers are usually on the Shade Room every other week or so. And I showed the guys the video, and I was like, 'I'm gonna go home and probably hit that walk with them one time, the SupaStrut.'

"And I saw them when I got to the game Friday, sitting there in the stands. I posted on my Facebook that I was going to do it. Then I saw them at the game, and I just did it."

Bridgewater said he didn't expect the video to take off like it did, but he's pleased by that development.

"It just continues to bring exposure to the community and some of the great things we're doing down there."

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