Saints quotebook: Sean Payton (July 28, 2018)

Saints coach Sean Payton talks about the team's first training camp practice in pads.

New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Opening Statement

“Today was the first day we were able to put on pads. It felt like we got some good work done. I'm sure we're going to watch the tape and see a handful of things that we need to clean up but we're far enough along from an assignment standpoint on the early installations, where they should know what to do. Hopefully we can just improve the technique and the way they're doing it.”

You went inside a couple times during practice, did you find it exceptionally hot today?

No. It's a plan. The plan we had going into camp, so it's really just a cooling tent. Especially those big guys, it’s a way for us to bring their core temperature down during the special teams periods. We have to be mindful of the time we're out here and the bigger-body player, so just being smart.”

So the heat wasn’t a problem today?

“I think this is exactly what we expected. I’d say it wasn't hotter than we thought, it wasn’t cooler than we thought. It's kind of what we thought and what it's been like for years here.”

Does anything in particular stand out from the first padded practice?

“It's just a number of these guys getting used to carrying the pads and playing with them, their technique and it was good to finally get in full uniform.”

Why did you decide to transition Dan Arnold from wide receiver to tight end?

“It was just one of our thoughts coming off the spring. With the depth we're at at receiver, he’s someone who has a big body. We think that he can play in that Y role. We'll see how he develops, but he is someone that he was cutting weight and really easily could get to 240, so we just went that direction with his body type.”

How do you think Arnold has been doing so far?

“It’s early.”

What did you think about Tre’Quan Smith’s day?

“I thought it was solid. I thought he had a pretty good offseason. He was injured in the spring, so this summer he's in a little bit better shape. We'll see the film, but I thought it was solid.”

What is your early assessment on the defense today?

“Well, it's early. I think there's some things, we haven't even seen the tape yet. But I thought we made a few plays on the ball. Guys are in better alignment position. I think we've been through the installation a few times. So, look we're just day one with shoulder pads so we'll see.”

What have you seen from Alex Anzalone?

“He can run. He made a play earlier on the sideline and he's working over there, competing with the weakside position. He's healthy right now and it's good to have him back out there.”

Have you noticed any improvement from a mental aspect from Anzalone?

“We saw him for a good portion of (2017) training camp, the start of the season. He is smart, so learning comes pretty quickly to him. Then it becomes the technique and the take on and all the things you're working specifically with that position. But I know it’s good having him back out of here and he's one of the smarter players.”

What have you seen from Cameron Tom since he arrived last year?

“He’s big. He’s powerful. He has a little bit of versatility, guard/center. He’ll be a guy we'll look closely at. He’ll be competing for one of those spots.”

What is the first thing you want Marcus Davenport to grasp?

“It os not one specific thing. It os the alignment, the assignment. He has to be able to play the defense called and then the technique and how he plays it, both in the run and in the pass.”

What was your impression of Aaron Glenn leading practice yesterday?

“I heard he did well. I gave him a hard time last night, but I think he has real good leadership skills. I think he's done a great job with his position, his DBs and I think he is someone who's going to be a head coach in our league. It was a bit unusual, there was a lot of us that went, a lot of us that knew Tony (Sparano) well. Looking at the practice, these guys did a good job. Staff that was back, (led by) Aaron, handled it well. It was good that we were able to go up there and kind of represent our team with all that went on there.”

Who is more competitive with their position groups, Glenn with the DBs or Curtis Johnson with the receivers?

“It probably goes back and forth. It's that time of the year and guys are working and competing. You've got to play this game with a little bit of an edge.”

How did you give Glenn a hard time last night?

“That’s just for Aaron and I.”

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