New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Payton put his team through a two and a half hour practice on Tuesday, Morning, August 3. Following the practice, he gave the media an injury update and also talked about several players and the status of Minnesota Vikings QB Brett Favre. Below is a transcript of his media availability.
Opening Statement:"On today's practice, early on Pierre Thomas left and we're going to look at his left wrist. We think it's fine but we'll get an X-ray on it. Jeremy Shockey and Scott Shanle we sat out again; those two are getting closer and of course Marques Colston was back practicing this morning off of PUP. Today was red zone; this afternoon is really just a walkthrough, teaching and lifting and session and then we get going again tomorrow in the morning with our next practice."
From what you saw, did Pierre Thomas jam his wrist?"We'll see. I think it's more of a bruise, based on what I saw."
Do you have thoughts on the news that Brett Favre has decided to retire?"No. I'll just worry about our team right now."
Do you think he means it?"Like I said, I listen to the experts and it's 50-50. He's a great player and obviously if he's playing you have to account for his presence on the field and if he's not, you have to prepare for who's playing in his place. He's had a great career and we'll see."
How did Marques Colston look out there today?"He's felt good and we probably erred on the side of caution with him another day and got him going today. He's in good shape and it's good to see him back out there."
What's your thought process on only having one kicker and one punter in camp?"It's back to that 80 number. When you're on a firm 80 – a few years ago you had a few exemptions because of the World League so the number might be 84 – but when you're on a firm 80, it becomes a little bit more challenging. If you're going to have a fourth quarterback, you have to take that into account. If you're going to have those additional spots, whether it's in the secondary or in the offensive line or at receiver, and we chose to at receiver with Robert Meachem's injury and where Marques was and Devery Henderson recovering. Each year you just have to look closely at that. Certainly we have a lot of confidence in the two guys we have in here kicking and punting."
Do you have a timetable for Shanle's return?"Like I said, we'll just play it practice by practice. I think sooner than later."
Was having Thomas Morstead do some field goal kicking today just a way to give Garrett Hartley a rest?"We were just resting Garrett today. He would be our backup in the event that something happened in a game so we just got him work."
What have you seen from Junior Galette?"He has good speed. He has good edge speed and he plays with a high motor. Those are some things that you see early on. He'll have a great opportunity in these preseason games to get some good rushes. He's a guy that plays hard."
Is he struggling a little bit considering he came from a small school?"No, I think he's doing alright. He's had a good offseason. He gives you a problem over there if you don't set the right way because he can get up the field quick."
What are your thoughts on Rickey Jackson getting inducted into the Hall of Fame this weekend?"Certainly he was a great player that had a great career. It's great to see the representation on behalf of that defense as good as they were. I know from a New Orleans Saints standpoint to truly have their first player in that Hall of Fame is important and he's certainly deserving. It was somewhat ironic that it happened last year, being named at the Super Bowl, and it's good for him."
What chance is there that Malcolm Jenkins beats out Darren Sharper?"We're not putting percentages or chances on it. He's competing for playing time; he's competing for a spot. We'll see. All those guys are out there pushing. He's one that's getting a lot of snaps now and so is Usama Young. We'll see how those guys progress; we'll see how Darren progresses with the injury."
Does it seem you'll have tough decisions to make at the safety position?"Those are good decisions. The challenge is when you have a lot of choices to make and you don't feel good about any of them. In our case we have some young guys in Malcolm and Usama – Usama has been here for a while now and Malcolm is in his second year and understands the defense – and then we have a veteran like Darren who is itching to get back on the field. Those are good battles."
How's Al Woods doing?"He's doing well. Certainly getting into the full pads now we have a chance to see a little bit more of him at tackle and he's doing well."
Is Adrian Arrington at 100% and how has he progressed so far in camp?"He's at 100% and he's getting a lot of good work. Especially with Marques' snaps being taken away, Adrian has been getting a lot of snaps. But he's healthy and he's working hard."