The NFL recently announced the offseason workout dates for the New Orleans Saints.
The New Orleans Saints offseason workouts have already begun. The first day of their training, Phase One of the NFL offseason, began on April 17th. Here are all the dates:
First Day: April 17th
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 23-25, May 30-31, June 1, June 5-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 13-15
Rookie Minicamp: May 12-14
Within this schedule, the workout program is broken into three phases and the minicamps.
In Phase One of the offseason workout program, which began on April 17th and lasts only two weeks, workouts are limited to strength, conditioning and rehabilitation. It was during this phase that news broke of how injured Saints have so far recovered from the ails. The returns were positive across the board, with a number of players including P.J. Williams returning fully healthy and others, including Hau’oli Kikaha, returning well into the rehab process. Phase One has already finished.
The three weeks after Phase One are Phase two, in which players can get on the field. Teams cannot conduct team exercises at this time. So players go through individual drills and positional instruction. Drills cannot have live contact. This is the stage we’re at right now. The receivers are running routes, the kickers are warming their legs, and everyone is running around.
Phase Three consists of OTAs, organized team activities. Now offenses run drills together, installing a vanilla playbook and building chemistry. Quarterbacks and receivers are connecting. Running backs are moving around. Defenses are matching up with the offense. There is still no live contact, but 7-7 and 11-11 drills can begin.
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There are then two mandatory minicamps. The first is for veterans, the second for rookies. These must occur during Phase Three.
Finally, throughout this whole process, teams are allowed to hold a rookie football development program that consists of meetings and classes, familiarizing the rookies with schemes, playbooks, coaching styles, and life-coaching on how to behave in the culture of the NFL.
This is all going on as you read this. The Saints are getting warm and ready to play. After the mandatory veteran minicamp, teams get into the real swing of things with training camps and contact drills. Last year, the Saints started these on July 20. We’re going to have to wait until then for the beat writer scouting to begin in earnest.