METAIRIE, La. -- The New Orleans Saints’ offense is a little banged up heading into a potential Sunday shootout with the Green Bay Packers. Running backs Pierre Thomas (shoulder) and Khiry Robinson (forearm) and center Jonathan Goodwin (knee) were all held out of practice Wednesday.
On a brighter note, tight end Jimmy Graham participated in full-team drills on a limited basis while still working back from his shoulder injury.
Robinson’s injury was previously unknown, but replays show he may have been hurt while being tackled out of bounds in the fourth quarter this past Sunday against the Detroit Lions. Robinson was wearing a brace on his right arm after Wednesday’s practice but seemed optimistic when he said, “I got a little boo-boo. I’m straight, though.”
Thomas and Goodwin seem even more questionable for Sunday’s game after they both left the Lions game in obvious pain. Neither was in attendance Wednesday for the portion of practice that was open to the media.
If Thomas and Robinson are out or limited Sunday, the Saints will lean heavily on running backs Mark Ingram and Travaris Cadet – with Cadet likely being heavily involved in the passing game as he was this past week.
Graham’s limited participation on Wednesday was a continued sign of his progress. Last Wednesday he was held out of team drills before participating on a limited basis both Thursday and Friday.
Graham played 30 snaps against the Lions but didn’t catch a pass and was only targeted twice. He wasn’t completely kept out of harm’s way, though, since he did block on a few occasions. He ran mostly short routes and possibly would have been targeted more if quarterback Drew Brees wasn’t having so much success throwing the ball down the field.
“Jimmy coming off the injury, we wanted to be smart and obviously not ask him to do too much, and so it just kind of happened to work out that way,” Brees said. “But I thought we made a lot of big plays down the field with the receivers.”
The rest of the Saints’ injury report was also encouraging.
Cornerback Keenan Lewis (knee/shoulder) and nose tackle Brodrick Bunkley (concussion) returned to practice on a limited basis after leaving last Sunday’s game early. Cornerback Patrick Robinson (hamstring) practiced fully Wednesday and linebacker Ramon Humber (ankle) was limited after both were held out of last Sunday’s game.
Backup linebacker Kyle Knox remained out with an ankle injury Wednesday.