September 8, 2009

Grant, Smith will play in week one; notes

This isn't a good thing, in our opinion, but defensive ends Will Smith and Charles Grant will be eligible to play in the season opener. The NFL has declined to enforce the four game suspensions of Grant and Smith in week one, with the federal appellate court decision pending.

But in the Saints' case, it means that the players will miss the Saints' game against the strong NY Giants instead of the game against the Lions, who haven't won a game since Week 16 of the 2007 season.

Not exactly a fair trade.

The pending decision in Minnesota has prompted the NFL to stay the suspensions, likely in a move of good faith. It was two Vikings players who challenged the suspensions in court, on behalf of all related suspended players, and have been fighting the legal battle for 10 months now.

The delay in enforcement of the suspensions apply to Grant, Smith, former Saints RB Deuce McAllsiter, Vikings defensive tackles Pat Williams and Kevin Williams and Lions defensive tackle Grady Jackson.

That's right, the same Grady Jackson once a part of the heavy lunch bunch in New Orleans is now available to play against the Saints.

Should the players stay their suspensions again in week two, they would be available against the Eagles but not available in Week 7 in Miami.

  • The Saints signed LB Stanley Arnoux and placed him on the injured reserve this. Arnoux, the team's second of two fourth round picks in April, was lost to an Achilles' tendon injury in the team's minicamp. Arnoux's contract is for four years.
  • Saints RB Pierre Thomas is limping and not practicing at full speed yet. Without Courtney Roby or Skyler Green, its unknown yet who will be the kickoff returner on Sunday, and Thomas was supposed to be at the top of that competition.
  • The Saints' team captains this year: Drew Brees, Jonathan Vilma, Troy Evans.

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