Saints return star hit hard
By By Richard Dark / EMG staff writer
July 29, 2003
METAIRIE, La. The New Orleans Saints received their first injury scare of training camp this season when Pro-Bowl kick returner Michael Lewis went down early in the morning practice after an inadvertent collision with special teams mate safety Mel Mitchell.
The two ran together after what Mitchell later termed as a "miscommunication." Lewis, who was trying to field a punt at the time of the impact from Mitchell, who was not facing his return man at the moment, took the brunt of the hit and went down. After several minutes, team officials had him transported off the field on a stretcher and via ambulance to Memorial Medical Center as a precautionary measure.
Haslett said Lewis should be fine, but probably won't practice for the next few days. "We're going to err on the side of caution out here and make sure the players' safety comes first."
Lewis was returned to the team's facility by mid-afternoon after it was deemed he suffered a cervical slight spine strain. The team will decide today when he can resume workouts.
Sully not a situation
According to Haslett, the camp holdout by first-round draft pick Johnathan Sullivan is a non-issue.
Meridian native Kenny Smith said although he's getting the most reps with the first team and learning from former players such as Cortez Kennedy, who was brought in to help clinic the defensive line, he doesn't feel like he has put together a great practice yet. "I don't think I've had a very good practice yet, at least not to the standpoint of where I want to be and feel I can be," Smith said after enduring the hot workout that saw a heat index in the high 90s. "That comes with repetition and working through this heat, so hopefully things will get better."
After a closed Monday night practice indoors, the team returns to the field for one public workout at 3 p.m. today.