New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton
Training Camp Presented By Verizon
Wednesday, August 21, 2019
Post-Practice Media Availability
"Roster wise, we signed linebacker Will Compton and then Fisayo Awolaja, offensive lineman. We signed him. We waived long snapper Nick Moore and then Chris Clark, tackle, went to reserve/injured."
What's been the biggest difference of Vonn Bell's progression this offseason?
"I think he's someone that can play fast and the only thing maybe that would slow him down early on was just getting a complete grasp as to the system. And I think as he's kind of going into his third year, he has a really good understanding of what we're doing. So, you're starting to see that combination of a player that knows what to do (now) and his experience and then with his athletic traits. I've been pleased."
Does is surprise you that a guy like Will Compton with his experience was available this late in training camp?
"Nothing surprises you anymore. I think teams are constantly trying to look at their 90 (man) roster right now. We have two more weeks before we cut down. We keep a short list, I'm sure like everyone else. And when we have injuries, we bring players in, we work players out and we make decisions. So, yes, his experience as a guy that you know was played before, has played in games (before) is helpful."
There are guys that have been hurt that are just coming along now, how hard is it for them to catch up?
"It's a challenge because you know you are behind. Hopefully we can get them up to speed quickly and we can get a real good look here in these next two games."
A veteran guy like Drew (Brees), you know what he can do, how much of a live look does he need in
"Our approach with him maybe has changed a little bit over the years. So, you're receiving a lot of live looks in practice. I think in a game like this, we'll plan on playing him. How much we'll see. I think it's important for everyone else around him too."
A little off topic, did you know Nancy Parker from FOX 8 at all?
"I just knew of her and of course we were in Los Angeles hearing the news of her death and it was a shock, disappointment, devastation. Our prayers go out to her and her family. It's always tough when (this happens to) someone who's like one of our own, someone who's part of our community. You saw her all the time because she brought you the news and it's just difficult."
Can you speak a little bit on (former Louisiana governor Kathleen Blanco) – just what happened or what she meant to this franchise?
"I got here in '06, she was our governor at that time. I know she was very instrumental in all the things that had to take place relative to the recovery. The last time she was here, not too long ago was to go into the Saints Hall of Fame and it was great that they were able to honor her prior to her passing."
Is there any one thing you can pinpoint that has allowed quarterbacks like Drew (Brees) to extend their careers a little bit or could you say it's a bunch of factors?
"I think it starts with the advancement. We're that much further along relative to health, nutrition. It's a credit to him and when you're seeing players play later in their career at the level that they're playing. We've come up a lot further along than we would have been 20 years ago. All the things that he does relative to preparing for a season that go unnoticed. There's so much that goes into it. He's in great physical shape. He spends year-round on training, so it's not just take the summer off and there's a lot that goes into what you're seeing on the field."
Is it also kind of a trend as quarterbacks extend their careers like Drew has, have the players around them just kind of start getting younger and younger by average?
"I think that would just be a byproduct. In other words, it's hard to do at any position and when you're doing it at quarterback, then you're going to see new receivers each year and the running backs. If you counted up all the different receivers he's thrown routes to, or running backs, tight ends, I think you'd be in the hundreds. I just think the advancement of where we're at today relative to training and all the things that go into that."
When you look at his limited snaps, how is Marcus Henry?
"He'll play more this week. We've had him before here. I think he is doing well. He didn't get as many snaps in the past game that we would have hoped, so this week we'll have a chance to see more of him."