If for no other reason than the dark side being a sad, lonely place underneath my pillow that I'd rather not visit on a Friday afternoon, let's look on the bright side here.
For starters, the Saints' all-too-important draft grade just got bumped up a couple of letters. I don't think I was the only one that was skeptical about selecting an offensive lineman in the first round when there were still so many holes on defense, but - if grading on the inevitable injury curve - it appears they really aced that Ryan Ramcyzk pick. As is par for the course he's also on the mend, but that might be a good thing with how many substantial pieces to the puzzle have dropped before pads have been put on.
Obviously I would rather the Saints have their starting Pro Bowl-caliber left tackle protecting Drew Brees' blindside during this extremely telling upcoming season. However, proving the draft pundits wrong while avoiding the uncertainly of the weekly "will he, won't he" that's seemingly been Terron Armstead's playing status since he came into the league is quite the (depressing) consolation prize.
In all seriousness though, this is awful news. Did the Saints forget to exterminate team facilities over the offseason? How is that goddamn injury bug still biting this team? When will the epidemic end? First Max Unger mysteriously finds out his foot needs operating on after months in which it could have been recovering. Then Nick Fairley's dormant heart condition seemingly arises as the ink dries on his long term contract. Now Terron Amstead - an athletic anomaly whose sky-high potentially is ironically being limited by his own freakish body - needs (potentially season ending) shoulder surgery after taking part in non-strenuous workouts in which he had absolutely nothing to prove? What the hell is going to happen when this professional tackle football team actually starts playing professional tackle football?
Now, the good thing about the Saints' depth getting put to the test is that - for the first time in a long time - they might actually have some. I just really, really wish they would reach the part of training camp where they are actually playing a contact sport at a high level before having to absorb brutal, detrimental blows to it. Make no mistake, losing Terron Armstead is just that.
Saints Superfan Jarrius Robertson Has Been Selected As The Recipient Of 'The Jimmy V Perseverance Award'
You know what, not only is Jarrius Robertson a worthy recipient of 'The Jimmy V Perseverance Award', but he's a necessary recipient of 'The Jimmy V Perseverance Award'. That's not to say the 15 year old with a personality that is charming and hilarious beyond it's years needs the recognition, but the fact that he is in the midst of overcoming a potentially fatal liver ailment absolutely does. With how enthusiastic he is about life it becomes easy to forget that it hasn't exactly dealt him the best hand. With one follow on social media you'd think he were everywhere at all times, and that does a bit of a disservice to the battle that had him resigned to a hospital bed following an organ transplant just a few short weeks ago.
If persevering is defined by staying the course despite tough circumstances then no one personifies it more than the kid whose unconditional happiness would have you believing that he's healthier than all of us. The trials and tribulations he's faced since birth are literally only on display when he's furthering the cause to put them in the rearview. Having witnessed him light up the room so many times before, there's little to no doubt that Jarrius Robertson's sense of humor is going to leave an entire amphitheater feeling more alive than ever before. It took a life to save his, and he's used it to inspire everyone he comes in contact with. If that's not the mark of a person who has got enough fire in his belly to carry such a prestigious torch then I don't know what is...
PFT- Adrian Peterson insists he’s a better receiver than the numbers suggest. In his 10 seasons in Minnesota, the running back averaged only two catches and 15.8 yards per game.
“It’s always funny to me because I’ve been playing this game since I was 7, and a lot of people say, ‘Well, he can’t catch the ball,'” Peterson said, Josh Katzenstein of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “I’ve been playing since I was 7 years old. I can catch a football.”
Peterson said he wasn’t a better receiver with the Vikings because that wasn’t something they asked of him. But his two most productive seasons as a receiver came with Brett Favre at quarterback. Peterson had 43 catches for 436 yards in 2009 and 36 catches for 341 yards in 2010.
“It’s all about having a guy that’s going to get the ball to you, and without a doubt I know (Drew) Brees is going to,” Peterson said. “We’ll be doing that.”
EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!
The man who could walk off the football field in five minutes as a future 'Hall Of Famer' after terrifying every single defense he's ever faced since he was a child can - indeed - catch a football! The physical specimen who is known for having such a large, powerful grip that it could bring the most calloused of men to their knees with one causal greeting is also capable of putting those hands together to stop some inflated leather from succumbing to gravity! Who knew?!
Imagine if the other 31 teams that didn't sign a freakishly athletic, unvalued runner were aware that runner could also catch? Man, the New Orleans Saints really have to feel blessed to have picked him up for a reasonable price before the rest of league realized that a guy who has shunned modern science to fully recover in record time from multiple disastrous injuries also had elementary hand-eye coordination!
Here I was thinking that every mini-camp story was completely useless conjecture, and - BOOM! - all the sudden I find out that Adrian Peterson doesn't need the ball delivered directly into his torso to be effective! Well, ne-ver-mind. In fact, get some more media down to the practice field. Can never be too sure when the next generational, professional athlete might break a story about his hidden talent of doing the something most people are taught before they reach the age of 5.
Nick Fairley Is Dealing With A Career Threatening Heart Condition...And The Curse Of Saints' Free Agency
When I first saw this report I instinctually laughed. Clearly there's nothing funny about Nick Fairley having a potentially career threatening condition within the organ that literally pumps life through his body, but sometimes you just have to laugh to keep from crying. Seriously, will the ghosts of dead money ever stop haunting the New Orleans' offseason acquisitions? The Saints finally took a shot on a player with a questionable past and managed to retain that player's services at a reasonable price after that shot hit the bullseye, and it might still result in the continuation of a long, long line of free agency faux pas?!
I know that Nick Fairley has apparently had this heart issue for some time now, but what satanic, VooDoo-esque forces have to working against this organization for it to pop back up almost immediately after he signed a relatively lucrative 4 year deal? Financial security at the all-too-generous hands of the Saints' front office is dangerously close to being considered a warning sign of impending health problems. Jairus Byrd, C.J. Spiller, and now possibly Nick Fairley? It's as if the check and the bill of health are physically incapable of clearing at the same time. Now, this could obviously subside, and - even if it doesn't - the resurgent defensive tackle's livelihood is undoubtedly the main concern. Still, the fact that even the shrewdest and seemingly smartest of moves might also bite this franchise in the ass is a sign that Murphy's Law governs the court of public opinion when it comes to their personnel decisions.
ESPN- Here is the full breakdown of Peterson’s contract:
Signing bonus: $2.5 million
2017: $1 million base salary (fully guaranteed).
2018: $1.05 million base salary. $750,000 roster bonus due on third day of league year. $50,000 workout bonus. Up to $1.25 million in weekly roster bonuses for every week spent on the 53-man roster, injured reserve or physically-unable-to-perform list. Up to $400,000 in additional per-game roster bonuses for every game on the active 46-man roster.
Incentives in 2017 and 2018: Up to $8.25 million in total (see breakdown below).
Rushing yard incentives: $150,000 for 750 rushing yards OR $250,000 for 1,000 rushing yards OR $750,000 for 1,250 rushing yards OR $1 million for 1,500 rushing yards.
Note: If Peterson reaches any of those incentives in 2017, his 2018 weekly roster bonus total will increase by the same amount.
Touchdown incentives: $250,000 for 6 rushing/receiving touchdowns OR $500,000 for 8 rushing/receiving touchdowns OR $750,000 for 10 rushing/receiving touchdowns IF he also leads the NFL in rushing touchdowns.
Team/player performance incentives: $250,000 if Peterson runs for 750 yards in the regular season AND plays in wild-card or divisional playoff game. OR $500,000 if Peterson runs for 750 yards in the regular season AND plays in conference championship game. OR $1 million if Peterson runs for 750 yards in the regular season AND Saints win Super Bowl.
The maximum Peterson can earn if he hits every incentive (including those 1,500-yard seasons and Super Bowl wins) is $15.25 million over two years.
There are a hell of a lot of numbers floating around up there and I have very little interest in breaking down all the scenarios - of varying unlikelihood - so let's just put it terms that every can understand. Adrian Peterson could potentially earn 15.25 million dollars over the course of the next two years, and if he does so then the New Orleans Saints will be back-to-back Super Bowl Champions having won those games by an average of 25 (sorry not sorry, Falcons fans) points. Unfortunately, it would also make Mark Ingram go from 'happy camper' to Jason Voorhees, but - as long as Drew Brees isn't included in the body count - he would yawn his way to ludicrously efficient numbers that would require a workload that's lighter than Adrian Peterson's baggage.
Now, none of that is coming anywhere close to fruition because 'AD' is 32 years old, coming off a season ending injury, undoubtedly slated at #2 on the depth chart, and more than likely needs to change his nickname to 'Half Day'. Still, it's nice to know that he's incentivized to regain his 'Hall Of Fame' form. If money is the motivation then there should be no shortage of will powering his wheels. You'd be an idiot to let a couple eye-popping incentives that were thrown in to sweeten a deal that was surely humbling effect your expectations, but it's mildly comforting to know that there's more than 3.5 million reasons for the Saints' backup running back to stay on the field and out of Sean Payton's doghouse.
You'd Have To Be An Idiot To Believe There Was Anything To The Mark Ingram For Jason Kelce Trade "Rumor"
LBS- On Wednesday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter told 97.5 The Fanatic that there is “absolutely nothing” to the reports of a potential Ingram-for-Kelce swap.
“There is absolutely nothing to that. There was absolutely never anything to that,” Schefter said, as transcribed by Matt Lombardo of NJ.com. “I spoke to people in both organizations, and they both said the same thing; ‘We’ve never spoken.’ I don’t know where that started. Maybe that would start talks up now, but I doubt it based on those reactions from both organizations. That was never in the works. I don’t want to say it would never happen, because stranger things have happened, but I’m just telling you there is nothing to that as of right now.”
Ahh, the internet - where one random person's thought can be considered a "rumor" that's strong enough that it's denouncement is newsworthy. Max Unger was deemed doubtful to be ready for the start of the regular season for all of about 12 hours (tops), and somehow the Saints had already had extensive talks about trading their starting running back for his replacement. Merely the beginning of May with their center's rehab yet to be underway, and Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis were so desperate for a 2-4 week starter (if that) in the middle of a newly rebuilt offensive line that they put their only proven, versatile rusher on the trading block.
Seems legit. The Saints front office probably hung up to debate the pros and cons and only then did they check to how the surgery that made it thee most remote of possibility went. Nothing fishy about the timing of that "report". You know, unless you factor in that the source carrying it was a "little birdie". Then - and only then - might it begin to stink to the highest of heavens...
NBD, but KBD: Max Unger Could Miss The Beginning Of The Season After A Little Offseason Foot Surgery
Just a little 'good news, bad news' for Saints' fans in early-May. It may be tough for some to see the sunshine beyond the clouds with New Orleans losing the veteran lynchpin of what was looking to be a pretty stout offensive line, but - factually speaking - Max Unger can't get hurt during training camp if he's sitting out training camp. I don't have a PhD so I don't know much about football related injuries, but I know that it's tough to suffer them when you're physically unable to play football. Can't get severely hurt during non-contact drills when you're not participating in non-contact drills. The way I see it, this was a preemptive measure to guarantee Max Unger's health when the games matter the most. Hell, the whole damn team should have snuck in a surgery just to trick the malicious injury bugs into swarming around a different locker room for once. Not sure what prompted this procedure 4 months after last season ended, but - hey - sometimes Spring has to rain on your parade to remind you that brighter days lie ahead. The first IR stint of the offseason was bound to be a depressing one, so it might as well have come when there's still plenty of time for it to heal. Surely it will be tough to start out an insanely important season without the man most responsible for keeping the pocket clean, but hopefully that means Drew Brees' will be lint-free by mid-season. Until then, the recently added reinforcements will just have to prove why they were picked up in the first place. Either that, or some of Malcolm Butler money could go to Nick Mangold.
LBS- Butler reported to the Patriots’ offseason program this week, but Mike Giardi of CSNNE.com reports that the 27-year-old “badly” wanted to be traded.
“He wanted to be traded,” Giardi said Thursday. “He knew what the money was in New Orleans. So when we talk about him, ‘Oh he’s happy. It’s nice that he’s joined his teammates again.’ He had no other choice.
“He wanted New Orleans. He wanted them badly. They couldn’t work out a deal. So what’s he supposed to do now? Sit at home? No, you suck it up. You have to turn yourself back into a Patriot at least for a year, and hope. Who knows, maybe you do your work and maybe they say, ‘Hey, Malcolm, you know what, we can’t give you (Stephon) Gilmore money. But maybe we can find something. Maybe we’ve got $10 or $11 million.”
Man oh man, it's only May and I feel like I should already be kneeling bedside begging for Marshon Lattimore's road to success not to encounter too many detours. I was absolutely ecstatic that he trickled all the way down to #11, but the mood could change quickly if his learning curve is hamstrung by...well...you get it.
I don't really give a crap that Malcolm Butler "badly" wanted to be a Saint because that's the same thing as saying that he badly wanted his salary to increase by approximately 300% over the next four years. I'd "badly" want to be custodian if I was going to make that kind of bank mopping up crap, so - unless he's seen rocking a Fleur De Lis around Foxboro - you can flush his love for the city right down the shitter I would gladly clean for 12.5 million dollars a year.
Still, if the pass defense doesn't improve greatly then not giving up a draft pick or two for a proven commodity at corner will fill Sunday nights with even more scaries than normal. I have a feeling it will due to my unbridled optimism and a couple of highlight videos that definitely don't overly glorify the skill sets of the defensive backs the Saints picked up in the first two rounds. Let's hope that feeling is rooted somewhere in reality or remembering that a top ten shutdown corner in NFL was dying to come to New Orleans (i.e. get paid) will serve as quite the twisting of the knife. The draft fell just right so trading their way into a massive cap hit didn't make much sense, but - considering Drew Brees age and contractual status - they better hope beyond hope that they don't end up being wrong. They had the cards and they decided to hold them, which is fine as long as their ace in the hole ends up winning them the hand.
Well ladies and gentlemen of the Who Dat Nation, there is your answer. The New Orleans Saints - under the scouting leadership of Jeff Ireland - are wholeheartedly committed to drafting the best player available. If the news that they were the absence of a Marshon Lattimore away from using the 11th pick to select a back-up quarterback for a defensive deficient team wasn't proof of that...
...then the direction they went with their wealth of picks on day two certainly was. After Sean Payton spent months talking about improving the pass rush, the Saints did all that they could to poke and prod a fanbase that would have been happy taking seven straight DE/OLB's and praying one of them panned out. I'm certainly glad they didn't do that. Not only because that would mean the front office is no smarter or any less emotional than the mob mentality of the internet, but also because - by all accounts - they filled a bunch of secondary holes in their roster with players that were more valuable than their draft slot. However, with the complete avoidance of adding an offensive guard last year and the painstaking wait for someone (i.e. anyone) that can bend the edge this year, you can argue that Mickey Loomis uses the draft as a way to ready the fans for the season by pandering to their "sky is falling" mindset.
Regardless - outside the lens of outside linebacker - it's impossible to be disappointed with what the Saints were able to do. Securing their defensive backfield with an instinctive, ballhawking safety that could mature into the actualization of the type of player whose name shall remain unspoken as he counts the millions of dollars he essentially stole from the franchise? Getting the gadget back whose comparison to Reggie Bush and/or Darren Sproles is based on merit and performance instead of some incessant need for fans to recreate the glory years? That seems worth the (hopefully late) 2nd rounder they used to jump in and get him. I suppose I could have done without taking a flyer on a linebacker who probably already has a surgery scheduled for the shoulder he hasn't even re-re-re-seperated yet, but even he could hold massive value relative to draft position is he stays healthy. Ultimately, they did get their situational pass rusher with a high motor and a knack for turfing the quarterback. Of course he doesn't come without flaws considering he lasted until the end of round three. However, those are flaws that apparently aren't present in the New Orleans Saints overall draft grade*, and that's really all you can ask out of a weekend long crapshoot.
The selections of Marcus Williams, Alvin Kamara, Alex Anzalone, and Trey Hendrickson may not have satisfied some fans, but they certainly satisfied a bunch of draft geeks and a host of roster needs that the Saints clearly weren't about to reach for.
*Immediate draft grades are stupid, meaningless, and premature...unless your team resides at the top of them. Everyone knows that.
Pro Golfer Ryan Palmer Sat In On The Saints War Room, And Later Implied That They May Have Been In On Patrick Mahomes
I can't believe this. Actually, I won't believe this. New Orleans had far too good of a day for me to start questioning their sanity immediately after the fact. I'm just going to assume that Ryan Palmer and Jordan Spieth were zoning out and kept hearing Patrick Mahomes name because it's pretty public knowledge that he's someone the team would have targeted at 32 if he lasted anywhere near that long. The idea of Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis passing on the absolutely dumbfounding amount of blue chip defensive prospects that fell for no apparent reason to reach for a quarterback of the future at #11- no matter how much they liked him - would have made the collective head of the fanbase explode.
I try to remain pretty optimistic and not overreact when one college player I know very little about gets selected over a host of other college players I know very little about. That said, if the Chiefs didn't make that trade and the Saints took the perfect draft day scenario and wiped their ass with it I would have either cried, screamed, or some extremely unsightly combination of both. Marshon Lattimore dropping was basically a dream come true for this franchise, so I'm going to chalk that potential nightmare up to a couple of professional golfers being overwhelmed by the frantic circumstances surrounding them. If only because it will allow me to breathe easy heading into day two.
Pick #11, Marshon Lattimore
Negatives: Dealt with serious hamstring issues in the past.
Positives: Literally everything else.
Let me start by saying what every single Saints fan that watched the draft was saying to themselves as they saw the first 10 picks come off the board; Thank god for offensively starved teams, their early infatuation with wide receivers and running backs, and their flat out desperation for competent quarterback play. I love Mickey Loomis and Sean Payton, but - to the brain dead organizations that gave New Orleans their pick of the defensive litter - you the real MVP's! The Saints ended up with a player that was far too talented for his draft slot, at a position of need, and - somehow - there were still enough blue chippers on the board for a war room discussion to take place. I can't imagine that in their wildest dreams they envisioned Marshon Lattimore falling into their lap, and they damn sure didn't think they would have any reason to take a second to think about it before running to podium if he did.
As for the player? I think we can all that this franchise hasn't had the best of luck drafting defensive backs. It's like there is already some unseen force working against them as soon as they put on a Saints jersey and step on the field. That's why you really have to be of sure of what they can bring to the table, and there is no player that brings more to the table than the consensus pick for top cornerback in the draft. Marshon Lattimore has everything you could possibly want out of a player at his position. The size. The speed. The desire to play press. The ability to shadow a wideout and be left alone on an island. The ball skills...
Assuming the kid's injuries are in the past then he's the total package, and - with only one full year of college football under his belt - that package likely isn't close to complete yet. The tools, the technique, and the potential are all there, and if he's able to put them together under Aaron Glenn then New Orleans not only got themselves their shutdown corner of the future, but they got him at a discounted rate. They entered the day needing defensive playmakers, and the board feel in such a fashion that they went home with a guy that was undeniably one of the five best in draft and an immediate, perfect fit. The fact that he's from a university with which the Saints front office has a ton of familiarity is just an added bonus...
Pick #32, Ryan Ramczyk
Negatives: Doesn't sack quarterbacks.
Positives: Literally everything else.
I'm not going to tell you I was jumping up and down on my couch holding a "I <3 Ramczyk" sign when the Saints took him to close out the first round last night. I'm not even going to tell you that the idea that Brandin Cooks was traded for defensive help and instead netted an offensive tackle didn't momentarily irk me. What I will say is that the collective "huh?" that came over the fanbase when his name was announced doesn't make him any less of a value pick.
In essence, just because it wasn't made at a position of desperate need doesn't mean it wasn't made at a position of need. I love Zach Strief as much as the next guy, but some people seem to forget that they were ready to stone him in the middle of the town square a year ago. Obviously he bounced back in a big way, but he's 34 years old and before yesterday his eventual "replacement" was starting at left guard. Terron Amstead is unbelievably talented, but he's also near-lock to miss a handful of games every season. The Saints bookended their bases by getting a guy who should be the right tackle of the future, with the very real possibility that the future is now. It sucks that Ryan Ramczyk isn't going to be bending the edge or pushing the pocket, but I much prefer getting a guy that was slotted to go in the top 15-20 as the second best offensive lineman as opposed to reaching for a second round talent. I'm rolling my eyes as I type this, but games are won in the trenches and Saints are now only a pass rusher away from being able to confidently fight a two front war. Once you put aside your personal expectations it becomes pretty difficult to argue against getting a guy that looks dominant on tape from a university that breeds successful players at that position.
Now, the only caveat to this selection is that it can't be followed by someone that's not going to have opposing quarterbacks picking grass out of their helmet. If the 42nd pick in the draft doesn't own explosiveness off the line then the Saints should hunker down and wait out the storm, because fans are going to raining hell fire from every angle. If you believe a single word they have said since the offseason started then I think agree with their need for a pass rush, but if they don't get one very, very shortly then the "best player available" explanation will fall on deaf ears.
A message to Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis: Puh-puh-puh-puhlease don't do it to us.
Unless you find rooting for a player that once physically disciplined his child by bloodying his groin to be a massive moral dilemma then I'm not sure how a Saints fan could disagree with this move. Adrian Peterson just accepted a backup role that was previously manned by someone that spent 3 years out of football. All due respect to Tim Hightower because his perseverance is something we should all strive for, but this is unquestionably an upgrade. New Orleans just signed a future Hall of Famer that has proven to be a physical freak that's capable of overcoming serious injury, and they did so at a price that resides somewhere between "rookie contract" and "Bilal Powell".
Now, there's no guarantee that AD comes close to displaying the type of explosiveness that made him one of the few must-watch runners in the league, but as a measure of insurance in a passing offense he doesn't even have to. If his presence alone forces defenses to temporarily forget that the person potentially handing him the ball is Drew Brees then he will have earned every cent of his deal before he even runs through the lanes made possible by playing with an elite quarterback. Mark Ingram is coming off a career year and undoubtedly going to get the bulk of the carries, but he's someone that has had no shortage of bumps and bruises throughout his career. Someone is going to need to take a little bit of weight off his shoulders, and why not have it be someone that's a year removed from rushing for nearly 1,500 yards? Obviously picking up a 32 year old running back is risky, but picking up 32 year old running back of Adrian Peterson's caliber on a glorified one year (2nd year option) contract that doesn't break the bank undoubtedly minimizes that risk. The Saints just got themselves another offensive weapon, and if anyone knows how to best utilize offensive weapons then it's Sean Payton.
The Butler Deal Has Hit A Stalemate And The Peterson Deal Appears Close To Complete...If You Believe Everything You Hear Before The NFL Draft
PFT- The Saints have shown interest in Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler for some time this offseason and met with him before he signed his restricted free agent tender with New England, but the need to send the 11th overall pick to the Patriots if they signed him to an offer sheet that the Patriots didn’t match was a big obstacle to bringing him to New Orleans.
Now that Butler has signed his tender, the Saints could negotiate different compensation with the Patriots in a trade. The chances of that happening may not be great, however.
Peter King of TheMMQB.com reports that the Saints still have interest, but that the thought of dealing picks for Butler before signing him to a big contract extension “is less attractive than it once seemed.” Per King, the Saints don’t want to deal any of their top three picks (No. 11, No. 32 and No. 42) because they believe they can get immediate contributors at every one of those spots.
I'm not saying I don't believe the reports that are currently coming out. I'm just saying I only trust them as much as I can trust any report that just so happens to come out about 72 hours prior to the complete mayhem. It's very possible that Mickey Loomis and Sean Payton would rather try their luck in a deep draft than trade away an asset for the right to pay a 27 year old cornerback 50 million dollars. It's also possible - albeit reportedly less likely - that the Saints and Patriots are sitting on opposite sides of a smokescreen engaging in a staring contest seeing if anyone blinks before Thursday night. All I am saying is that you don't spend the better part of the offseason negotiating an agreed upon long term deal with someone else's property only to draw an arbitrary deadline prior to the period in which a franchise is most likely to bend on a mutually beneficial transaction.
There is nothing predictable about the NFL Draft, and the results of it could easily change someone's organizational perspective. If the Saints don't like the secondary players made available to them on Day 1 then Malcolm Butler's relative value could easily increase. If Bill Belichick falls in love with some guy who he plans to inevitably turn into an All-Pro then a cornerback on a one year deal who could potentially be disgruntled after coming oh-so-close to cashing a monster check could easily become more expendable.
Personally? I wouldn't think twice about giving up an early second round pick for a proven lockdown defensive back when the twilight of Drew Brees' career is on the horizon. I didn't think the Saints front office would either, but we will find out who is playing what hand by the end of the week. If the worst case scenario is solidifying the running back position with a low risk, high reward athletic freak who has something to prove after being humbled by free agency, and adding three young, affordable playmakers in the top 42 then the worst case scenario ain't too damn shabby.
The Saints Play The Redskins On November 19th. I Wonder What Junior Galette Has Planned For That Day...
I find it exceedingly odd how much resentment Junior Galette harbors for the organization that not only gave an undrafted free agent a chance, but showed their faith in him when he appeared deserving of an expensive, long term commitment. Obviously the term "responsibility" is foreign to the defensive end that has more arrests than snaps played over the last two seasons, but I still can't wrap my head around Junior Galette thinking that he's the one that is owed vengeance. The idea that he saw the schedule and said to himself "I can't wait to stick to those idiots who cut me" after he did everything in his power to get cut is beyond fucking infuriating.
I'd give a quick refresher course, but the font in the rest of this article would look like it were written in blood if I had to provide a link for each incident - criminal or otherwise - that had the world's dumbest athlete prematurely released from a deal that ended up causing nearly as many headaches as the person it was given to. For all intents and purpose, Junior Galette ended his tenure in New Orleans by repeatedly shooting himself in the foot. The Saints may have been the ones that gave him the gun (his contract) and quickly backed away as he hobbled around throwing a flurry of n-bombs at his head coach on social media, but I fail to see how that makes them deserving of the return fire.
I guess I understand why he's failed to move on after all this time since he has literally has not played a SINGLE meaningful football game since, but you would think he'd be more careful about assuming he'll still be an NFL employee come November 19th. He probably has no idea what an "omen" is, but when you've followed up back-to-back ACL tears with yet another run-in with the law and you're on an easily dismissible one year deal it's probably safer to not assume your job is secure. I can't imagine Junior Galette is the type to heed advice, but if I were him I would worry about making it through training camp healthy and employed before worrying about facing the team whose salary cap he took the messiest of shits on.
P.S. I need the visual of Junior Galette sitting on his couch (or in a holding cell) come November 19th with his arms crossed so that his tattoos look the animation from the old NFL intros where the helmets of the teams who were playing would clash together. NEED IT.
Seems A Little Odd That Malcolm Butler Signed With The Patriots But Won't Be Attending Their Offseason Workouts, No?
So what these reports are basically saying is that Malcolm Butler chose to sign with New England only to turn down an invite to their workouts? Huh, well that's strange. Why would he contractually obligate himself to play professional football for less than he's worth, but not want to show up and train with the team he just rejoined? It's almost seems like...he's unhappy with the (for lack of a better term) restrictions of his current situation or something. But if that were the case then why would he voluntarily prolong it another season? I'm not exactly an NFL General Manager, but - with his standoffish approach to their offseason and a long term deal due at the end of the year - I can't help but think that it might behoove the Patriots to move him to a team that would be willing to reimburse him properly.
Man, if only there were a organization that has been in contact with Bill Belichick throughout the last few months and has a desirable asset to offer despite being unwilling to part with their own first round pick by signing him to an offer sheet. It really sucks there's no franchise that is in desperate need of a starting cornerback and able to pay the apparent market value (set by the Brandin Cooks trade) for a high-end player who is due a massive payday sooner rather than later. If there were then I would think that some handshakes would have commenced a meeting discussing an inevitable, mutually beneficial deal long before yesterday. Oh well. Too bad the persistent rumors are just rumors. It's a real shame that the Saints definitely don't have any real need for secondary help, or Malcolm Butler could have stopped in and done some negotiating when he flew South solely to check out Bourbon Street and eat some beignets.
Annnnnd that's why you do your due diligence. I don't know is Adrian Peterson is going to end up in New Orleans. I don't know if the money he's demanding will match up to the much smaller amount that he's worth to the Saints backfield. I don't even know if he'll truly be happy backing up Mark Ingram. Still, if all of that does get figured out and he winds up wearing the black & gold then the Saints will have added a player who isn't your average 32 year old rusher.
Is it really surprising to anyone that Adrian Peterson looked explosive in his workout? We are talking about a guy that tore his ACL and MCL in December of 2011, and started a 2,000+ yard MVP campaign in September of 2012. Granted he was much younger then, but if there is a physical freak that can defy the expedited aging process of running backs then it's AD. His injury history is concerning, but last year's 1.9 YPC in a ridiculously small sample size is not. The days of 200 yard games and 80 yard touchdowns are in his past, but - considering his superhuman athleticism - the potential for a boom is worth the off-chance that he completely busts.
Let's face it, he would be replacing a 30 year old who spent multiple seasons out of professional football before experiencing a resurgence behind Drew Brees. All due respect to Tim Hightower, but I don't think it's crazy to say that Adrian Peterson would be an upgrade at the position - even if that assumption is being based on one unseen workout. His signing wouldn't be a game changer, but he probably does still have one or two in those legs of his.
TheComeback- Chances are if you have not seen Matt Ryan this offseason, he may be watching the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl on a daily basis. What would possess a man to watch his team’s greatest collapse in the biggest game of the year? For Ryan, it is his way of coping with reality.
“No, I watched it,” Ryan explained. “I watched it a day after. I watched it two days after and I watched it three days after. For me, it was one of those things where you kind of want to be able to deal with it appropriately.”
As Ryan suggests, everybody copes in different ways.
“Maybe, that’s different for everybody. Some people bury it away,” Ryan said. “For me it was ‘all right, let’s watch. Does it feel the same way it felt as we were going through it?’”
Ladies and gentleman, now introducing the 2017 NFC South Champions....
Your New Orleans Saints!!!
Well, that was easy. I thought Matt Ryan was at least going to have to get under center again before he understood how traumatized he was by his team's historically epic collapse. I at least expected him to have to end up caught in an eerily similar situation to that fateful Sunday night in early February before he realized that he's in his own head. Turns out he's so haunted by his own failure that he's become obsessed with it. Just watching it on a loop hoping beyond hope that the same damn movie miraculously has a happy ending for once.
And he can pound sand with the whole "everyone copes differently" bullshit, because re-watching a tragedy with the intent of putting it in your rearview doesn't make a single grain of sense. There's a reason there are cameramen at weddings and not funerals, and I would assume it's because disaster isn't supposed to have replay value to the person who experienced it first hand. Matt Ryan is basically Drew Barrymore in '50 First Dates'. He suffered through the athletic equivalent of a car wreck, and now every morning his wife has to play the tape of Kyle Shanahan shitting his pants on the biggest stage in sports or else he goes about his day convinced that the Falcons actually won something for once.
I'm honestly starting to feel bad for the guy. Considering his career trajectory of being good once every three seasons, he was already due for a dramatic drop in production before he started watching himself die inside daily. Now taking the division crown will be like taking a fumble from the feet of Cam Newton, taking offense from a Jameis Winston public appearance, or taking pleasure from the repetitive jokes about the team that blew a TWENTY-FIVE point lead in the Super Bowl. In short, it will be easy*.
*Assuming the Saints aren't destined to go 7-9 every single year from now until the end of time.
Did I Wake Up In 2015, Or Is Junior Galette In Trouble For Getting Into ANOTHER Spring Break Brawl?!?
LBS- Junior Galette was one of many to be arrested during a spring break event in Biloxi, Miss. over the weekend.
Galette, a former Saints and current Washington pass rusher, was arrested on Friday night at MGM Park for getting into a fight and running away, WLOX reports.
Galette was charged with disorderly conduct and failure to comply, according to the report. He bailed out of jail quickly, per his lawyer.
Galette was among 52 arrested as part of the Biloxi Black Beach Weekend spring break event. He is still facing a June trial for a 2015 misdemeanor domestic violence incident. The trial is for a civil suit.
Ahhh...Junior Galette, or as I like to call him - the gift that keeps on giving. I know Mickey Loomis wasn't all that grateful of a recipient as he spent the last few seasons vigorously working around money that died faster than the career of the guy they offered it to, but the ongoing rap sheet of an infamous front office failure taught the Saints a valuable lesson. That lesson was to believe people when they show you who they really are, regardless of whether or not they have active hands and speed off the edge.
I'm still wary of talented players with glaring character issues to this day, and it's all because Junior Galette was selfless enough to take off his belt and whip an unsuspecting woman with it. Imagine my surprise when I woke up to find that the dumbass athlete that makes other dumbass athletes look like church-going Wonderlic warriors had added yet another chapter to his cautionary tale just weeks ahead of a draft that contains Joe Mixon. Just when I thought I had heard the last of a guy that never knew when to shut the fuck up he takes a break from recovering from his second straight ACL tear to join in a beachfront brawl before running away like the coward that he is. If that doesn't put a fucking bow on a timely reminder to Sean Payton and Co. to tread lightly around prospects that are penitentiary prone then nothing will.
P.S. Hopefully this time he went with a color scheme that was a little less incriminating...but I have my doubts...
I'm beginning to think that my moral compass is broken. Maybe it's become magnetized by the memory of Adrian Peterson busting off weekly 60 yard runs as the best back in the league, but I've been consistently down on the Saints adding players with past character issues and this visit has my interest pointing North. I suppose it's an odd exception to make for a 32 year old running back with injury concerns, but if the money and role is right then it's one that could potentially give the Saints some of the game-breaking ability they lost by trading Brandin Cooks.
Now, I readily admit that it's extremely likely that the money and role won't be right between a team that's looking for a quality backup and someone that still thinks they have the ability to be a high-end starter. I think if Adrian Peterson was willing to accept what the Saints can afford as well as the 10-15 touches per game that they would offer him then he wouldn't still be available right now. However, if his time spent watching his value increasingly sour on the open market has humbled him then it could be a case of New Orleans scooping up the hot girl when her self esteem is at it's lowest.
The Saints don't need Adrian Peterson, but they do need some help at running back. I don't know what the former thoroughbred still has up his sleeve, but it's a safe bet that it's at least as much as Tim Hightower had when he went from three years out of football to spelling Mark Ingram in key situations. With the offensive line looking to be as stout as it has in years, the addition of another guy that can take some of the astronomical burden of Drew Brees would be quite the luxury.
Of course, if it's going to be a source of tension in the locker room then it's not with the risk. Lord knows it would take a hell of a lot of sacrifice (financially and professionally) on the part of the free agent for his transition to go smoothly. However, do you really take a two day meeting with Sean Payton without understanding the versatility of an offense that has never - and will never - cater to a workhorse back? I guess that remains to be seen and I hope it's seen clearly by both parties, because the only thing worse than letting 'AD' leave without a contract would be giving him one that hampers the team's ability to improve defensively by adding a player like - for a completely random example - Malcolm Butler.
Cue the entrance music...
Now starting...at right guard...for your...Newww Orleannns Saints...Mr. Fat Booty!
I think I speak for all Saints' fans when I say that I couldn't care less what Larry Warford has got in them jeans as long as he can get that ba-dunk-a-dunk downfield and put some prospective tacklers on their back. If the key to him pulling that end around to spring some gains in the screen game is his phatty than I hope it gets voluptuous enough to balance a Lombardi Trophy on. If he solidifies the interior of the offensive line, creates some sightlines, and gives Drew Brees a pocket that's fitting of a pair of JNCO's then I'll worship that man's thickness like I'm chasing chubbies. All he has to do is show Saints' fans the fruits of his apple bottom and he might have the SuperDome shaking due to the (t)work of his tail feather.