Perhaps no Saint is having a better training camp than receiver Brandon Coleman.
After three years with the team, he has yet to become a dominant player during the regular season. Last year, he finished tied for sixth in receiving yards with Travaris Cadet, but with Brandin Cooks gone, Coleman believes he is primed for big things in 2017.
"It's time, you know. It's time,” Coleman said. “It's my fourth training camp here, and the time is now. There's no tomorrow. I'm starting to realize that.”
Receiver Willie Snead said he and Coleman have talked time and time again about him stepping up. “How he needs to have that impact because he's the biggest guy on the field and his presence needs to be felt every time he steps up to the line of scrimmage. When we talked about that, I think he felt that and actually took it and ran with it."
“My coaches always told me I still had a lot more growing to do,” Coleman said. “So it's just part of my body's natural development so I'm just trying to use my God-given abilities."
"Your confidence comes from demonstrated ability,” said head coach Sean Payton. “That can happen during this evaluation period. We have seen it happen with players. It goes back and forth. You can think that you can do it and want to do it, yet if you have not, until you have done it and repeated it, (your confidence doesn't grow). I think we're seeing that a little bit with him."
Even with Michael Thomas as the clear-cut number one pass-catcher on the Saints roster, Drew Brees said Sunday there's not a receiver on the roster he trusts more than Coleman.
"It's an honor to be able to play with him and the fact that he trusts me and I trust him is just a testament to how much time we've spent together working on these things.” Coleman said.
The Rutgers product works with his fellow receivers to get better but has also reached out to others outside the organization.
"Torrey Smith, Demarius Thomas,” Coleman said. “Just trying to pick their brain because they're veterans in this league and I look up to them and I respect their game so I'm just trying to do what I can. When Colston was here, I was picking his brain the same way.”
With similar size, strength and ability as Marques Colston had in his prime, Coleman is poised for a huge season, but he's not ready to reveal any personal goals just yet.
"Yeah, they're personal, so I'm going to keep them to myself," he added.
If he keeps playing like he's played in training camp thus far, Brandon Coleman will have little trouble reaching those goals, whatever they may be.