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Sean Kelley: Observations from Sunday's Saints practice

Team spends time on running game

White Sulphur Springs, W. Va - The New Orleans Saints returned to a morning schedule for practice Sunday at The Greenbrier. The workout featured further attention to the running game, something Coach Sean Payton said needed work after watching the tape of the first preseason game. Here are some observations:

  1. This could be a good week of growth for offensive lineman Andrus Peat. With the return of Terron Armstead at left tackle, Peat is spending most of his time at right guard. Payton and offensive line coach Dan Roushar believe the timing is good for Peat to play one spot. And they're hoping to have a stretch that sees that group as a whole move forward with less moving around. Let's face it. Peat can only benefit from having Zach Strief on his right and Max Unger on his left moving forward.

2.  The emphasis on the run game Sunday gave us an opportunity to tune into the running backs a little more.  Mark Ingram II looked great with a highlight run blasting through the interior for a big gain, if not a score.  Willie Snead is more than just a return specialist now. Murphy is improving as a ball carrier and that has been noticed by Payton.

3.  Even though there was emphasis on the run game Sunday, it was still a good day for the receivers. Rookie Michael Thomas, again, thrilled fans and teammates with a one-handed diving catch. Drew Brees scored on a deep ball in the two-minute drill. He was in a crowd and had Da'Vante Harris pulling his jersey off of his shoulder pads while eyeing the ball into his hands. Brandon Coleman had one of his better days and Willie Snead was his usual steady self.

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