Sunday ended up being the first round of prescribed rest days for the New Orleans Saints’ veterans, part of a plan the team has to keep older players fresh.
Running back Adrian Peterson, right tackle Zach Strief and linebacker Manti Te’o were all held out of most of Sunday’s practice, and defensive end Cameron Jordan’s snaps were limited.
“We’ve got a list, kind of a schedule,” Payton said. “Throughout the week, we’ll take two or three guys and kind of hold them back. They’ll go through individual and warm-up and stretch and walk-through, it’s just a way to make sure we’re being smart with those guys in regards to their lower bodies.”
New Orleans will limit the days off to veterans who have a good grasp of the scheme, and every player views the time off differently.
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Peterson, who has carried a heavy workload in his career, laughed a little when he was asked if there was ever a time that he would have refused an off day.
“Was there ever a time?” Peterson said. “No, not at all.”
Jordan, on the other hand, ran gassers on his own after practice. The Pro Bowl defensive end understands that the coaching staff wants to get some of the younger ends more work, but he likes to take as many reps as possible.
“The coaches tried to do me a solid or something? I don’t know, they sat me down in terms of letting some younger players go,” Jordan said.
Tom injured: Undrafted rookie offensive lineman Cameron Tom did not practice on Sunday after suffering a sprained ankle, a source told The Advocate. Tom, a center from Southern Miss, is expected to be back on the field in a couple of days.