<span style="">Last night we practiced at Jackson Memorial Stadium, which is nearby. The reason why is because they have light for the darkness. It was a much needed change-up for a camp that is blurry with days that all seem to be the same. Sometimes the little things like changing practice times or locations can make all the difference. Initially I thought we had a longer break to recoup energy, but there was more to it. It was exciting to play under the lights like in high school. There are numerous memories for all of us playing night games. We still talk about wearing our jerseys to high school on Fridays.
The lights shined last night but a lot of players did, too. I think Adrian Arrington, from the University of Michigan, has been impressive. I won't lie to you, I am biased towards him, but he really does deserve some credit. He looks sharp on his route techniques and has caught the ball extremely well. I think his speed is explosive. He's a long strider so you don't really how fast he is, a lot like how Marques Colston runs. With Colston and David Patten leading the way, our wide receivers are very fortunate to learn from veterans that are knowledgeable and willing to teach other players. In other places I've been, there hasn't been a lot of player-to-player coaching and accountability. Meaning that we handle a lot of things in-house before a coach needs to address it. Truthfully, many times guys are competing against each other so they won't help each other. That's not the case here. A core of players here at the Saints can see the big picture and know the better we do, the better it is for everybody.
Not everyone can be a star. There have to be role players that put the team before themselves. This doesn't mean I don't have to support my family. My family is everything and everyone to me. With that being said, I am guy that realizes the best thing for the New Orleans Saints is for all of us to get better…together. Like my teammates, I'll take a player under my wing if he needs some direction. Whether I know what I'm talking about or not, I try to be assertive and at least act like I'm knowledgeable. This obviously is a stretch at times. I can definitely point a rookie in the wrong direction.
There is a term know as "a bone". I don't know if you've heard of the saying "Can a dog get a bone?" but in training camp the "dogs" are the players, and a "bone" is a break. A "bone" could be a water park visit, like in years past. We haven't had a "bone" yet, but just about everyday now, I pick a young guy or a naïve veteran, and tell them "Today's the day. I heard from a coach we are going to go to the water park." This is a dirty move that crushes a player's psyche. It takes a lot of mental strength and preparation for a mid camp two-a-day. Of course, it's a little harder to practice when you think you have a day off. I do this in fun and joke with the guys all practice long. I guess you could say I'm a set-up guy. The sad part is people know this and still want to believe me.
Come on guys, you know better.
I'm hoping I'm right at least one time so I can say "I told you so." The points being, if I tell you about a "bone", go ask Colston or Patten about it.
The other night I told the story of rookie offensive lineman Brian Stamper and his hilarious Viking song that he rattled off and brought down the house with. I had to get the lyrics from him to share with you all. Here it is:
The Lyrics of "The Viking" revealed
By Sven Za Viking aka Brian Stamper
"Oh when I was a Viking boy my mom told me "Now Sven,
You must only date the Viking women, never Viking men."
And I looked at my mother and said "That will be so hard,
Because when I look at both of them, I can't tell them apart"
Oh they both are big, they both are fat, and both are very hairy
And a Viking woman without makeup, OOO that's just too scary
But I have found a lovely girl and now I'm set for life
So, let me introduce you to my brand new Viking wife"
(Point to a fat, hairy guy)
For a listing of all of Mark Campbell's blogs, please click here or look under the "News" tab.