Nick Toon is expected to make preseason debut this week

AP

One of the rare new faces for the Saints offense is the son of former NFL receiver Al Toon.  Drafted in round four in April, Nick Toon ostensibly replaces Robert Meachem on the depth chart.  But Toon has yet to play in the preseason.

Interim coach Joe Vitt says that likely will change Thursday night, when the Saints visit the Titans.

“He’ll play this week,” Vitt told the media on Sunday, in comments transcribed and distributed by the team.  “He’ll practice hopefully on Tuesday and hopefully he’ll play this week.”

Toon exited practice on August 2 with a foot injury.

If nothing else, Toon’s debut provides a reason to pay attention to the final week of the preseason, which features cameo appearances (at most) by starters and no nationally-televised games.

Three games will be played Wednesday, and 13 will happen Thursday.  Usually, the final preseason games come on the Friday night of Labor Day weekend, but the preseason games moved up with the shifting of the final roster deadline from Saturday to Friday.  That adjustment happened because the Thursday night regular-season opener has been moved to Wednesday night, given the conflict with President Obama’s speech at the Democratic National Convention.