The New Orleans Saints traded for WR Michael Thomas and signed him to a four-year contract in the offseason. He will be playing in his first preseason game this week, but it is unclear if he will play against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The mike thomas saints is a news article about the New Orleans Saints and WR Michael Thomas joining the team for their preseason road game.
According to a source, Michael Thomas has joined the New Orleans Saints in Baltimore for their preseason opening, the latest indication that tensions between the club and its star receiver have eased.
Thomas will remain on the sidelines for Saturday night’s game, according to NOLA.com, as he continues to recuperate from ankle surgery he had in June. Thomas and Saints coach Sean Payton had a good discussion earlier this week, according to Yahoo! Sports, and are not pursuing a separation.
The tension had been building since Thomas chose to postpone his ankle surgery until June this year. Although the two parties agreed early in the offseason to explore whether Thomas’ ailment could be treated without surgery, sources say there was a period of silence between them until Thomas showed up for the team’s required minicamp in June.
Payton expressed his disappointment with the surgery’s delay at the start of training camp two weeks ago.
“Obviously, we would have preferred that to happen sooner rather than later. And, to be honest, it should’ve been “At the time, Payton said.
After several stories quoted sources claiming Thomas was to responsible for the delay, Thomas vented his anger on social media earlier this week.
“They attempted to smear your name. By not sharing your side of the story, you were able to save theirs “Thomas made a tweet about it.
Thomas also “liked” many tweets implying that the Saints pushed Thomas to play through his ailment without surgery last season, and are now blaming him for his lack of health.
Thomas has been tight-lipped about his reasons for postponing surgery.
Last season, Thomas missed a total of nine games after suffering an injury in the closing minutes of Week 1. He returned to play in Week 9, then spent Weeks 15-17 on injured reserve to recover before returning for the playoffs.
In seven regular-season games, he had 40 receptions for 438 yards and didn’t score his first touchdown pass until the playoffs. After the season, ESPN’s Adam Schefter stated that Thomas will need surgery since he tore the deltoid, as well as other ligaments in his ankle.
Thomas’ comeback date has not been set by the Saints, but insiders have voiced hope that he will return early in the season. He is presently listed as physically unable to perform and has yet to practice.
Thomas, who was named the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year for 2019 after setting the league record with 149 catches, was also at the center of some discord last year when he was suspended for one game for punching teammate C.J. Gardner-Johnson in practice.
Both instances have fueled rumors that the Saints may want to sell their top wide receiver. However, it does not seem that this is the team’s current strategy. And, given New Orleans’ present roster and salary-cap position, that would be less than ideal.
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Following quarterback Drew Brees’ retirement, an offseason salary-cap purge, injuries to Thomas and kicker Wil Lutz, and a potential suspension for defensive lineman David Onyemata, the Saints are projected to start at least 11 different players in Week 1.
After parting ways with No. 2 receiver Emmanuel Sanders and veteran tight ends Jared Cook and Josh Hill this summer, Thomas is crucial to the Saints’ on-field success.
Outside of running back Alvin Kamara, fourth-year receiver Tre’Quan Smith, second-year undrafted receiver Marquez Callaway, and second-year tight end Adam Trautman seem to be their top pass catchers going into this season.
After signing a five-year deal for between $19.25 million and $20 million per year in 2019, Thomas, 28, is under contract until 2024. After the club converted the majority of his pay to a signing bonus earlier this offseason, his basic salary for 2021 is just $1 million. The Saints would hardly save anything against this year’s cap if they moved him, and then would be slapped with additional $22.7 million in “dead money” against next year’s limit from already paid bonuses.
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