- Obama not worried about Ebola at upcoming African summit in D.C.
- Obama: ‘We tortured some folks’ after 9/11
- Obama administration asked whole D.C. Circuit to take on major Obamacare case
- Mark Levin: Topple GOP leadership or country will ‘unravel’
- Massachusetts to let police chief deny gun buys to those deemed unfit
- John Kerry condemns attack on Israeli soldiers, kidnapping
- U.S. starts to evacuate American Ebola patients from West Africa: Report
- Geraldo slammed as ‘dummy’ for backing Clinton’s bin Laden claim
- Israeli spokesman: No need to debate who broke the cease-fire
- 35 Palestinians killed; Israeli officer missing
Saints WR Morgan looks to rebound from knee injury
Question of the Day
METAIRIE, La. (AP) - New Orleans Saints wide receiver Joe Morgan knows he will have to wait a little longer to prove he has fully recovered from the torn anterior cruciate ligament that wiped out his 2013 season.
Unable to practice in minicamp, he expects to be ready for the start of training camp in late July. Meanwhile, he is dealing with the frustration of watching his teammates compete on the field while he watches from the sideline.
After averaging an eye-popping 37.9 yards on 10 catches in 2012, he thought his role would increase last year. Instead, his year ended during an early August scrimmage.
“The most frustrating thing about it was it happened even before a preseason game,” he said. “I just have to focus on getting back healthy and trying to come back this year. I guess I have the same goals that I had going into last year.”
The primary goal is to become more of an every-down receiver after a debut season that featured several spectacular plays. His three touchdown catches went for 80, 48 and 34 yards. The 48-yarder, which came against Tampa Bay, was particularly memorable. He spun off a tackle attempt by safety Mark Barron. kept his balance even though his knee almost hit the ground and, with his back to the goal line, flipped cornerback Eric Wright over his head before running into the end zone.
“With the expectations we had for him going into last season, (the injury) was just a downer,” quarterback Drew Brees said. “He had worked so hard to put himself in that position. Now all of a sudden you have to revert your mindset to how can I come back and be better than I was before. It’s easy to get frustrated and feel overwhelmed.”
The ACL injury was not the first for Morgan, who went undrafted in 2011 out of tiny Walsh University in Canton, Ohio. He missed the 2011 regular season with a torn meniscus after returning a punt for a touchdown and scoring on a 56-yard reception in the preseason.
Brees’ advice has helped him cope with his second major rehab, including minor setbacks like the Saints’ first OTA in May when he tried to run before practice and experienced soreness.
“Drew told me you have to focus on creating little goals for yourself and knock little pieces away at it,” he said. “The hardest thing is trying not to plateau and keep the rehab going forward. You’re always thinking, where am I going to be at and am I going to play at the same level?”
If he can’t return to his old form, a roster spot is far from guaranteed.
After Morgan signed a one-year contract in March to remain in New Orleans, the Saints took wide receiver Brandin Cooks, another speedster, in the first round of the draft. They also re-signed veteran wideout Robert Meachem, who caught 16 passes for 324 yards last season after rejoining the team in September.
“We have a lot of good candidates,” Saints coach Sean Payton said. “There will be some good competition here.”
Morgan insisted he was not worried about anyone else. His sole concern is reporting to training camp with the same speed he exhibited before his latest injury.
“I’m working on becoming a more complete receiver, but the best skill set I have is pretty much my speed,” he said. “There’s always going to be competition every single year. You have to go out there and work for it.”
NOTES: NFL.com reported Tuesday that defensive tackle John Jenkins, a third-round draft pick in 2013, had surgery for a torn pectoral muscle and will return for training camp. Payton refused to talk about the status of Jenkins, who made 21 tackles as a rookie backup.
By Isaac Orr
New carbon-dioxide rules would put America in the dark
- House GOP resurrects border bill, predicts successful Friday vote
- U.N. condemns Israel, U.S. for not sharing Iron Dome with Hamas
- Border agents cleared of civil rights complaints from illegal immigrant children
- Obama military strategy too weak for future security, panel reports
- Porn-surfing feds blame boredom, lack of work for misbehavior
- Ben Carson takes major step toward presidential campaign
- Feds raid S.C. home to seize Land Rover in EPA emission-control crackdown
- CRUZ: A tale of two hospitals: One in Israel, one in Gaza
- Ted Nugent slams 'lying freaks' at liberal media: I'm 'doing God's work'
- Pentagon wants extra $19M to equip, train Ukrainian troops
Top 10 U.S. military helicopters
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors