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27/11/2019 2:42 am  
METAIRIE Youth Jared Cook Jersey , La. (AP) — The “Sheldon Shimmy” was the dance of choice at Saints practice on Monday evening.Defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins, known for his shoulder-shaking sack dance, returned to practice for the first time since tearing his Achilles tendon in New Orleans’ divisional round playoff victory over Philadelphia last January.Coach Sean Payton said he does not think it is realistic that Rankins would play in the regular-season opener against Houston on Sept. 9, but that the decision to bring Rankins back to practice indicates a realistic possibility he will be ready to return to the lineup before Week 6.Rankins, whose eight sacks ranked second on the club last season, had been on the Saints’ physically unable to perform list, meaning he hadn’t been taking up an active roster spot.But if he’d remained on the PUP list beyond the preseason, he would not have been eligible to return to the active roster until after the sixth week of the regular season.“The feeling was he’ll be ready earlier than six weeks,” Payton said. “I think it’s worth doing what we’re doing now.”Rankins said he arrived at Saints headquarters Monday expecting to spend his day in the treatment room on his own as usual, only to be notified by trainers that he’d been cleared to suit up for practice.“It’s very surreal putting on cleats again, to come out here, go through warmup lines Jared Cook Jersey Stitched , walk-throughs, everything like that, seeing your teammates embrace you,” Rankins said.“A lot of people were surprised. The first thing guys started doing was the shimmy. They see me — I kindly have to give the lesson on how to do it. I’m happy to be back out here. My teammates are excited for me to be back out here. It’s by the grace of God I’m able to be back out here and play the game I love again.”Payton said he would not have predicted when training camp began that Rankins would be back on the active roster soon, having seen how long other players have needed to recover from such an injury.“He’s really done a remarkable job just since training camp’s begun,” Payton said. “Obviously, we’re encouraged.”Rankins, a Saints first-round draft choice in 2016, also missed nearly the first half of his rookie season with a fractured fibula.He said he could not be certain he’d be playing by Week 6, but added, “It’s something I would obviously like. I’ll leave it at that.“Right now it’s about being able to come out here every day and take steps now as a football player — not as a guy who’s trying to rehab and get back out here,” Rankins continued. “It’s about being able to improve on my football abilities New Orleans Saints A.J. Klein Jersey , to be able to kind of hit my stride again, do things I was kind of able to do last year.”The Saints have recent experience shepherding a defensive lineman back from a similar injury. Former Saints defensive end Alex Okafor tore his Achilles tendon in Week 11 of the 2017 season and was active by Week 1 of last season. He wound up with four sacks and also blocked a punt.Rankins showered credit on the Saints’ training staff and said he also has consulted with Okafor, now a former teammate who left in free agency for Kansas City.“The best advice I got was from Alex, honestly, he said ‘When you’re ready, cut it loose. Don’t think. Don’t hesitate. Don’t baby it. When you get that thought in your head. ‘Yeah, I can go do this,’ just cut it loose and go play, and the rest will take care of itself.'”Notes: The Saints activated Rankins after placing tight end Garrett Griffin on injured reserve. Griffin limped off the field with an apparent lower body injury during Saturday night’s preseason game against the New York Jets. … Veteran punt return specialist Marcus Sherels returned to practice for the first time since before New Orleans’ preseason opener, raising prospects the Saints will be able to provide him some return opportunities in Thursday night’s preseason finale against Miami. Drew Brees didn't have a completion until the final play of the first quarter. His final pass, one he was trying to throw away, got intercepted.And things certainly weren't much better in between for Brees and the NFC South-leading New Orleans Saints Womens A.J. Klein 2019 Jersey , whose 10-game winning streak ended in a 13-10 loss at the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday night."We didn't really find a rhythm pretty much the whole game," Brees said. "We may have had one decent drive, but for the most part felt like we just didn't really find a great rhythm with what we were doing."He finished 18 of 28 passing for 127 yards passing, including a 30-yard touchdown to Keith Kirkwood in the third quarter on a drive when two Cowboys penalties extended the drive 鈥?a defensive holding call on third down and a roughing the punter near midfield.Brees was held to under 200 yards for the third time this season, and second week in a row. The Saints (10-2) had their season low with only 176 total yards, and their fewest points in three years 鈥?since a 24-6 loss to Houston in Week 12 of the 2015 season."I'm not worried about it. We'll be just fine," running back Mark Ingram said. "We've still got the same playmakers. ... We're good. We've just got to fix it. We didn't do enough today. We're going to make sure this never happens again."New Orleans also converted only three-of-11 third downs, and got stopped on fourth-and-goal from the 1 in the second quarter after a Cowboys fumble."We weren't really good on the early downs. We didn't have the balance that we've had in prior games," coach Sean Payton said. "We struggled running the ball with any consistency, and we didn't want to get into a one-dimensional game."Some games you play where you don't' have a lot of third downs because you're operating efficiently, but that was the case certainly in this game," he said.New Orleans missed a chance to perfectly match Dallas from two years ago Cheap A.J. Klein Youth Jersey , when then-rookie sensations Elliott and Dak Prescott won 11 straight after dropping the opener.The Cowboys (7-5) won their fourth consecutive game and assured they will at least remain tied for the NFC East lead.Alvin Kamari had 72 total yards 鈥?36 yards rushing on 11 carries and 36 yards on eight catches. His took a helmet-to-helmet blow from Jaylon Smith on a short pass when he was stopped short of a first down with about 10 minutes left.Kamari said afterward, "I'm good."There was no penalty on the play."What do you think?" Brees said when asked about the non-call. "Let the league deal with that."The Saints then punted, and the Cowboys ran nearly 7 minutes off the clock while getting to the New Orleans 6 before Prescott was sacked and fumbled."All things considered, to still have a chance to go down and tie or win the game," Brees said. "So it's unfortunate because we had an opportunity."Two plays later, with Brees under pressure and trying to get rid of the ball, Jourdan Lewis made a diving interception 鈥?a play that was upheld on a replay review.Said Brees, "I was trying to throw it at his feet and kept it a little too high."

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