WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W. Va. Saints cornerback and future Hall of Famer Champ Bailey was noticeably absent from Friday's practices after also missing the afternoon walkthough on Thursday. Head coach Sean Payton declined to reveal any specifics, but did intimate the 36-year-old Bailey had suffered an injury of some sort.
'No status (update),' Payton said. 'We don't discuss injuries during training camp.'
The exact nature of Bailey's injury and when it occurred -- if he's actually injured at all -- is unclear. The team has been conscientious about limiting his reps during camp, and he's been splitting time with Patrick Robinson, who also was injured a season ago. Bailey labored through most of last season in Denver, playing in just five games because of a foot injury.
Payton gave no timetable for Bailey's return, as he did with safety Jairus Byrd, who began camp on the PUP list after undergoing back surgery that caused him to miss all the team's offseason workouts.
Payton announced the Saints would proceed with an abundance of caution as it relates to Bryd, though he said the Pro-Bowl safety would come off the physically unable to perform (PUP) list prior to the team's return to New Orleans. True to his word, Byrd was activated on Tuesday and practiced with the team for the first time since signing a six-year, $54 million free-agent deal this offseason.
Ben Grubbs missed his fourth consecutive day of practices on Friday, while, as Payton described Thursday, 'he's working through a few things.'
'We are just resting him,' Payton said after Thursday's practice.'I think we are going to see him in the next day or two. ... It is something that we will get him out on the field soon.'
Pro Bowl defensive end Cam Jordan was limited during Friday morning's session after rolling his ankle on Thursday. He did participate in the afternoon walkthrough Friday.
After re-aggravating his quad during the team's first practice last Friday, second-year wide receiver Kenny Stills has since remained in street clothes on the sideline. Payton said Stills, who did participate in the afternoon walkthough on Friday, initially sustained the injury a few weeks ago while working out in San Diego.
Defensive tackle John Jenkins, the team's sole remaining player on the PUP list, continues to work towards his return after minor offseason pectoral surgery. NFL rules allow Jenkins, who was placed on the PUP list before the team left for the Greenbrier, to return at any time during the preseason provided he hasn't practiced with the team. Jenkins has been working with strength coaches on the sideline and looks to be close to a return.
Defense back Terrence Frederick and wide receiver Steve Hull both were in street clothes on Friday. The team did not release any information regarding their status or a timetable for their return.
Big 6-foot-8, 328-pound offensive lineman Ty Nsekhe was absent from the morning and afternoon sessions. Nsekhe was signed to a reserve/futures contract in January. No information has been released regarding his absence.