As I posted yesterday, the New Orleans Saints went through their player-led workouts, which are voluntary because of the lockout. I have no seen an exact number of the players that attended, but it looked to be well above 30 players, active and unrestricted and restricted free agents, that made the trek to New Orleans to work out with their teammates.
For those interested, the New Orleans Times-Picayune has some video coverage of the workouts, which is interesting for football starved fans.
Most interestingly, however, are two of the Saints’ absences from the workouts. While some players like Pierre Thomas and Chris Ivory are nursing injuries did not show, Lance Moore and Reggie Bush, both assumed healthy by all accounts, were nowhere to be seen in New Orleans for the practice.
Bush’s current gripes with the Saints are well documented, as he tweeted ‘It’s been fun New Orleans’ shortly after the Saints traded up to draft Mark Ingram. However, Saints coach Sean Payton said he talked to Bush prior to the lockout being but back in place and said he plans on Bush being on the roster next season. Whether Bush is on the Saints is entirely up to the player, as he will have to negotiate a reduced contract, so the absence by the former Heisman winner looks ominous for his future in the Big Easy.
Moore, on the other hand, is looking for a long-term contract from the Saints after being one of their top receivers over the past few seasons. He made the Saints roster as an undrafted free agent and became one of quarterback Drew Brees’s top targets, but has been hit with one-year tenders since he has been in the league. While it can’t be confirmed, his absence could be a message to the Saints organization.
Even with the two malcontents, it is a great thing that Saints players are working out on their own and should be seen as a good sign for the upcoming season.