The Saints were able to hold off the Buccaneers 35-28 last weekend without tight end Jimmy Graham in the lineup, but they’d likely prefer to try for a third straight victory with Graham back out there as a target for Drew Brees’ passes.
It will probably be Friday at the earliest before we find out anything concrete about Graham’s status, but the early signs are better than they were last week. Graham’s injured ankle was well enough that he was able to practice on a limited basis for the Saints on Wednesday, something he wasn’t able to do a week ago. Graham did practice on Thursday, but he wound up being ruled out of the game before the team made its way to Tampa.
Interim coach Joe Vitt said that Graham was able to do “land-based things” during practice and sounded a hopeful note about how Graham looked while he was out on the field.
“He did routes on air (and) looked very, very good,” Vitt said, via Nakia Hogan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune.
How Graham’s ankle responds will be key to his hopes of getting back on the field this week. We’ll keep an eye out for that on Thursday, but this definitely qualifies as a good start to the week for the Saints offense.