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  • 2016 schedule to come

Second-year Saints cornerback Damian Swann believes he’s put concussion problems behind him

Advocate file photo by SCOTT THRELKELD -- Saints cornerback Damian Swann breaks up a pass intended for Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris last season. Swann later left the game with his second concussion of the season.

A lot of people have ideas about what’s best for Damian Swann. Their ideas are rooted in good intentions. The Saints’ second-year cornerback saw his rookie season cut short by three concussions suffered in a span of nine weeks, a streak of injury that has left some wondering if the long-term implications of concussions… Continue reading →

Kasim Edebali has quietly become a potential answer at edge rusher for Saints defensive line

FILE - In this Dec. 21, 2015, file photo, Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) is sacked by New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Kasim Edebali (91) during the first half of an NFL football game in New Orleans. A decade ago Edebali was a teenage quarterback with the Hamburg Huskies, an American football team in northern Germany. He hoped he might become good enough to one day play in NFL Europe - the biggest stage he could imagine. But the league went out of business in 2007, so Edebali left home and has found an even bigger stage, as a linebacker for the Saints. (AP Photo/Jonathan Bachman, File)

The New Orleans Saints have been quietly confident in their stable of young edge rushers all offseason, leaving the spot untouched in both the draft and free agency, even after second-year starter Hau’oli Kikaha went down with a torn ACL during organized team activities. Two of their options at the position remain largely unproven.… Continue reading →

Saints release training-camp schedule

The New Orleans Saints will be racking up some frequent-flier miles and hotel points in training camp later this year. New Orleans released its official training camp schedule Tuesday, a slate that includes two weeks at the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia sandwiched around a trip to New England, followed by a trip to… Continue reading →

New Orleans Saints release training camp schedule

The New Orleans Saints have released their 2016 training camp schedule, a slate that includes trips to West Virginia, to Foxboro, Mass., back to West Virginia, down to Houston and finally to Metairie.

New Orleans will have 22 practices open to the public, including five in Metairie after the Saints return home from the Aug. 20 preseason game against… Continue reading →

Change in defensive line scenery doesn’t alter Saints defensive end Bobby Richardson’s outlook

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Saints DL Bobby Richardson (78) works in defensive drills during the Saints' morning Training Camp practice Monday in White Sulphur Springs, WV.

Bobby Richardson finds himself facing a far different defensive line picture than the one he left in January. New Orleans shifted its best defensive player, Cameron Jordan, to the “closed” end position Richardson occupied last year, drafted fourth-rounder David Onyemata and started him out at the position, spent its first-round pick on an interior… Continue reading →

The way of winning: Back with the Saints, safety Roman Harper aims to show the defense what it takes

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--New Orleans Saints defensive back Roman Harper (41) offers water to safety Alden Darby (42) at the Saints training facility during minicamp in Metairie on Wednesday, June 15, 2016.

In his first week back with the New Orleans Saints, it seemed like Roman Harper had a teleporter — because he was everywhere. The veteran safety, who returned to the Saints earlier this month after two seasons with the Carolina Panthers, was moving all over the practice field during minicamp, putting his fellow defenders where they needed… Continue reading →

Tom Benson reaches deal in lawsuit over shares of Saints, Pelicans in final piece of family feud litigation

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER  -- Tom Benson leaves for a lunch during a break in his trial at civil district court in New Orleans Wednesday, June 3, 2015.

After more than a year of legal wrangling over nonvoting shares in his sports teams and various other business assets, Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson appears to have reached a settlement agreement with the officials overseeing trust funds benefiting his estranged daughter and grandchildren, wrapping up the last unresolved piece of litigation in a feud that has… Continue reading →

Rod Walker: At Saints minicamp, fans were ‘not here for 7-9 seasons’

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Melvin Cavalier, right, and his nephew, Collins Whitney, watch the Saints practice at their training facility during minicamp Thursday in Metairie.

Collins Whitney only cares about two things. Church services Sunday. And the Saints. “Those are the two biggest things in his life,” said Melvin Cavalier, Whitney’s uncle. And that’s why Cavalier brought his 47-year-old nephew, who has autism, to the Saints minicamp the past three days. Cavalier and Whitney… Continue reading →

‘Getting ready to build on what we started’: Sean Payton and the Saints get set for training camp

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton walks past the defense during warm ups at the Saints training facility during minicamp in Metairie, La. Wednesday, June 15, 2016.

The New Orleans Saints will report to training camp at The Greenbrier on July 27, coach Sean Payton said at the close of the team’s summer schedule Thursday. The team will bring its players back in three stages. Rookies return to the team facility in Metairie first; injured players return the week before training camp begins; and the… Continue reading →

New Orleans Saints minicamp: Nick Underhill’s top three thoughts from the final day

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Saints free safety Jairus Byrd stretches at the team's training facility during minicamp Thursday in Metairie.

1. GRAYSON WATCH It’s been a mixed minicamp for second-year quarterback Garrett Grayson. He’s made a handful of mistakes but littered them with some smaller bright moments. He missed on a slant and then connected with Kyle Prater on a fade for a touchdown Thursday. Grayson admitted he wasn’t entirely pleased with his performance the previous… Continue reading →

Saints safety Erik Harris, imported from the CFL this offseason, is making a strong first impression

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--NNew Orleans Saints defensive back Erik Harris (30) runs a drill at the Saints training facility during minicamp in Metairie, La. Wednesday, June 15, 2016.

Kenny Vaccaro summoned the name of Delvin Breaux. It’s an easy comparison. Last year, Breaux came to the New Orleans Saints from the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League and immediately made an impact. Now, his former CFL teammate, Erik Harris, is trying to do the same thing. But, after letting the words hang in… Continue reading →

Saints minicamp notes: How rookie QB Garrett Grayson looks; why Sean Payton not worried about kickers' performances

. Attendance: Hau’oli Kikaha and Avery Young were both not spotted at practice again. Linebacker Stephone Anthony was also missing. Safety Jairus Byrd, cornerback Kyle Wilson, defensive end Kasim Edebali, safety Jamarca Sanford, punter Thomas Morstead and linebacker Dannell Ellerbe did not participate in team drills. Shorter day: The Saints ended practice early on Thursday after going through… Continue reading →

Familiar sound: WWL radio announces Deuce McAllister will take over as Saints’ color analyst

Deuce McAllister has been named the color analyst for Saints radio.

Back in the days when Deuce McAllister was the engine running the Saints offense, Hokie Gajan used to turn to Bobby Hebert on every third down with the same suggestion. Didn’t matter how many yards the Saints needed. Didn’t matter what kind of game McAllister was having. Gajan always wanted the same play called.… Continue reading →

Saints defensive end Davis Tull, injured as a rookie, tries to make up for lost time

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ -- Saints defensive end Davis Tull, left, and safety Roman Harper go through drills during OTAs at their facility in Metairie last week.

Davis Tull finds himself in the role of a “tweener” again. Not the bridge he had to build between his past as a defensive end at Chattanooga and the strongside linebacker role he played during his brief rookie season with the New Orleans Saints. In Dennis Allen’s defense, Tull is back at defensive end, lining up with his… Continue reading →

New Orleans Saints minicamp: Joel Erickson’s top three thoughts from Wednesday

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--NNew Orleans Saints defensive back Erik Harris (30) runs a drill with New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Michael Mauti (56) at the Saints training facility during minicamp in Metairie, La. Wednesday, June 15, 2016.

1. DOMINANT DEFENSE. The defense has turned in two very solid days during the mandatory minicamp, largely led by a secondary that has forced all three quarterbacks to work hard for anything they can get. And the defense might have turned in its best day of the open summer practice sessions Wednesday. The defense racked up seven… Continue reading →

Archie Manning receives honor in Lafayette

Advocate staff photo by BRAD BOWIE -- Dale Kelly, left, and Noah Kelly, 12, center, from Eagle Scout Troop 55 out of Broussard, meet football legend Archie Manning on Wednesday at the Doubletree by Hilton. Manning was attending a luncheon at the hotel, during which he was honored with the Distinguished Citizen Award by the Evangeline Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America.

Around 300 Lafayette community business leaders gathered to honor former New Orleans Saints quarterback Archie Manning on Wednesday as he received the Evangeline Area Council Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Citizen Award at the Doubletree Hotel in Lafayette. “I’m really humbled and honored,” Manning said. “Scouting has done great work for many generations, and I… Continue reading →

Saints news & notes: Defense rules again as minicamp rolls on

. The New Orleans Saints’ defense has turned in two very solid days of work during the mandatory minicamp, largely led by a secondary that has forced all three quarterbacks to work hard for anything they can get.

And the defense might have turned in its best day of the open sessions so far on Wednesday. New Orleans… Continue reading →

Rod Walker: Chris Bazile chasing dream of playing for Saints

Chris Bazile could have just walked the seven blocks from his house in Metairie to Saints’ minicamp Tuesday. And trust me, as amped as Bazile is about getting this chance, he probably would have. You could see it on his face Tuesday after the first of three days of minicamp. “It’s amazing to be in the locker… Continue reading →

Three and out: Nick Underhill’s thoughts on P.J. Williams, Craig Robertson and Garrett Grayson after the first day of Saints minicamp

Advocate staff photo by SCOTT THRELKELD  A large crowd watches practice during the New Orleans Saints minicamp Tuesday, June 14, 2016, at the Saints training facility.

1. WILLIAMS SHINING It was a strong day for Saints cornerback P.J. Williams. He had a one-handed interception on a pass that ultimately carried him out of bounds, jumped a route in team drills intended for Brandin Cooks and dropped an interception, and also broke up a pass. He’s playing both on… Continue reading →

Full contract details for Saints DB Roman Harper

Here are the details on Roman Harper’s one-year, $1.065 million deal with the Saints, according to a source:

Base salary: $985,000
Guarantees: $150,000 for skill, injury, cap
Signing bonus: $80,000

The deal qualifies for the minimum salary benefit, which means Harper’s cap charge for this season is $780,000.… Continue reading →

Fully evaluating players at minicamp difficult, but Saints seek to get a better grasp of abilities

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS --Saints head coach Sean Payton can't believe what he's seeing after a play during the Saints'  morning practice Tuesday in White Sulphur Springs, WV.

Anxiousness and impatience have taken over. After watching the roster being assembled over the past few months, and several weeks of impatiently waiting to get a glimpse of how the players will fit the system, the natural inclination is to place value on whatever is happening during the offseason program. At this… Continue reading →

Saints rising star Terron Armstead celebrates his big contract by getting back to work

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON  -- New Orleans Saints tackle Terron Armstead

Terron Armstead has had no time to revel in the five-year, $66.671 million contract extension he signed at the beginning of May. Armstead, who effectively took over for franchise icon Jahri Evans as the cornerstone of the New Orleans Saints offensive line when he agreed to his new deal, hasn’t even splurged on anything with his newfound riches.… Continue reading →

Key for Saints' master plan on defense in 2016? Be multiple but easy to execute

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Dennis Allen celebrates a defensive touchdown with New Orleans Saints free safety Jairus Byrd (31) against the Carolina Panthers in New Orleans, La. Sunday, Dec. 6, 2015.

Things looked different during each glimpse provided to outside eyes during the New Orleans Saints’ three organized team activities open to the media during the past month. One safety, two safeties, three safeties. The defensive line going from four men to three and back again. The defense was doing all kinds of different things, never once settling into… Continue reading →

C.J. Spiller believes a clean bill of health will allow him to finally flourish in Saints offense

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ--  New Orleans Saints running back C. J. Spiller runs with quarterback Drew Brees during the team's OTA practice at their facility in Metairie, La. Thursday, June 9, 2016.

C.J. Spiller tried to fight the truth last season. He was coming off a season that ended prematurely because of a broken collarbone, and he was determined to not let an injury keep him off the field again. When Spiller returned early in the season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his knee in training camp, he… Continue reading →

Lasting impressions from Saints OTAs and answering reader questions

A couple of quick, lasting impressions from organized team activities. We didn’t talk much about Nate Stupar or Craig Robertson the last few weeks, but both players flashed at different times. Stupar nearly intercepted Garrett Grayson during the second open practice and had a few nice blitzes. He also flashed a few times on Thursday and broke up a… Continue reading →

Three and out

1 What we learned Things were looking good for the defense during the first two organized team activities open the media. Then, on Thursday, Hau’oli Kikaha wasn’t spotted on the field. It was later learned that the 2015 second-round pick suffered a torn ACL. It was expected Kikaha was going… Continue reading →

Roman Harper gets a homecoming with the New Orleans Saints

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ-- New Orleans Saints safety Roman Harper goes through drills during the team's OTA practice at their facility in Metairie, La. Thursday, June 9, 2016.

It was time for a change of scenery, time for Roman Harper to shake things up. As a pro football player, he’d only ever known the Saints, and it was time for him — and for the organization, too — to try something new. And so two years ago, after eight seasons with the Saints, the… Continue reading →

Bigger and better, Saints defensive end Obum Gwacham ready for big changes after Hau’oli Kikaha injury

Advocate staff photo by SCOTT THRELKELD -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) eludes New Orleans Saints defensive end Obum Gwacham (58), New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94) and New Orleans Saints cornerback Damian Swann (27) as he scrambles during the fourth quarter Sunday, Sept. 20, 2015, at the Mercedes-Benze Superdome.

Obum Gwacham and Hau’oli Kikaha have been pushing each other this offseason, testing themselves against each other like a knife and a piece of steel, facing off in a relationship that embodies the Biblical verse that has become a rallying cry for the Saints over the years. Iron sharpens iron. Now, Gwacham finds himself in… Continue reading →

After Saints defensive end Hau'oli Kikaha tears ACL, here are team's options for replacement

Advocate staff photo by SCOTT THRELKELD -- Carolina Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart (28) gets away from New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Hau'oli Kikaha (44) during the first quarter Sunday, Dec. 6, 2015, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

The New Orleans Saints’ effort to revamp their defense took a hit after defensive end Hau’oli Kikaha suffered a torn ACL during practice earlier this week, according to a source. Kikaha figured to be a major piece of the defense, and the team was planning to move him down to defensive end to help aid with the pass rush… Continue reading →

Second-year Saints running back Marcus Murphy out to prove he’s more than just a returner

New Orleans Saints running back Marcus Murphy (23) in the first half of an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts in Indianapolis, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2015.  (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Marcus Murphy knew exactly what the look Drew Brees shot his way meant. The second-year back had lined up wide, and veteran linebacker Dannell Ellerbe trotted over to line up in one-on-one coverage against the speedster. For Murphy, that’s an obvious mismatch, and he knew Brees was coming his way. Moments later, Murphy hauled in a… Continue reading →

Veteran safety Roman Harper to return to New Orleans Saints, agency says

Advocate file photo by SCOTT THRELKELD -- Saints quarterback Drew Brees hugs and safety Roman Harper after the Panthers' 41-38 win Dec. 6at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

. Roman Harper is heading back to where it began. The veteran safety has agreed to return to New Orleans, where he played his first eight seasons, according to his agency. Harper spent the last two seasons playing for the Carolina Panthers. A former second-round pick, Harper made the Pro Bowl in 2009 and 2010. The Saints… Continue reading →