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Saints Defensive Backs Shine Brightly in 2nd Joint Practice vs. Chargers

The New Orleans Saints and the Los Angeles Chargers concluded their 2nd of two scheduled Joint Practices a short while ago at the Jack R. Hammett Sports Complex in Costa Mesa, California; and the Saints defensive backs were the day's stand-out performers as both teams continued to prepare for Saturday Night's nationally-televised 3rd Pre-Season game on CBS.

2nd year safety Marcus Williams continued his magnificent Pre-Season with an interception of Chargers QB Phillip Rivers in 7-on-7 drills, and then later in team drills it was 3rd year CB Ken Crawley making an impressive PBU (pass break-up) on the 15-year veteran gunslinger; not long after he was intercepted yet again by 9th year veteran CB Patrick Robinson.

Meanwhile on the other side of the football, Saints #1 WR Michael Thomas continued his absolute DOMINANCE of Chargers CB Jeff Richards; embarrassing the 5th year L.A. veteran defender for a 2nd straight day.

And Thomas wasn't alone either — as rookie WR Tre'Quan Smith continued his "break-out" with an impressive catch over a Chargers defender from QB Drew Brees.

Brees was particularly sharp; and Saints head coach Sean Payton told reporters after practice had ended that the 18th year veteran and future Hall of Famer WILL START vs. the Chargers on Saturday Night; as he and the starters on both sides of the ball are expected to play at least part way into the 2nd quarter (and possibly longer for some players, depending on the snap count).

Saints tight ends Ben Watson and Micheal Hoomanawanui both sat out of today's session, along with offensive guard Andrus Peat. 6th year defensive end Alex Okafor, who surprised everyone with his toughness yesterday after his unexpected early return from an injury that he suffered last week, was limited and held out of team drills.

He's unlikely to play on Saturday Night when the team faces the Chargers at the Stub Hub Center in suburban Carson, California just outside of Los Angeles. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Central time and will be televised locally in New Orleans on WWL Channel 4.....

Saints News Network featured columnist and Big Easy Magazine contributing writer Barry Hirstius is a 52-year old semi-retired journalist, former New Orleans-area sports editor, and writer previously with several sites that exclusively cover the New Orleans Saints football team. Additionally, he is a recurring guest on a variety of local Sports Talk Radio programs. Barry is also a New Orleans native who grew up as a fan of the team while attending games as a young boy at the old Tulane Stadium in the early 1970’s, originally following and now covering the team for a span of over 45 plus years. And perhaps most importantly of all: he is the Grandfather of two beautiful young girls, Jasmine and Serenity.....

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