Fighting cancer, Saints tight end Foster Moreau could participate in voluntary offseason practices

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Newly signed Saints Foster Moreau, who is undergoing treatment for cancer, could “absolutely” participate in the upcoming voluntary offseason practices that begin later this month, coach Dennis Allen said Saturday.

“We don’t anticipate any issues with him as far as being able to participate and all the information I have is that he’s very positive,” Allen said during rookie minicamp this weekend. “I really don’t anticipate that being a challenge that we’re going to have to face.”

Allen also spoke optimistically about the recoveries of veteran two-time All-Pro wide receiver Michael Thomas and rookie running back Kendre Miller, TCU’s third-round pick in this spring’s NFL Draft.

Miller, who missed the national championship game after spraining his knee during TCU’s College Football Playoff semifinal win over Michigan, was in attendance at practice, wearing a No. 25 jersey and shorts , but without a helmet.

Although practice was open to the media, Miller limited himself to conditioning work on the side that consisted mostly of light, straight-line running.

“I don’t expect him to miss anything in training camp or anything like that,” Allen said.

The 6-foot, 220-pound Miller rushed for 1,399 yards for TCU last season, averaging 6.7 yards per carry. In three seasons, he posted career totals of 2,410 yards and 26 rushing TDs to go with 29 catches for 229 yards and one receiving TD.

Allen said Thomas, who when healthy is New Orleans’ No. 1 wide receiver, had the “hardware” removed from his surgically repaired foot over the past two weeks. His injury kept him out of all of the first three games of the 2022 season. And that was after he missed more than half of the 2020 season and all of 2021 with a nagging ankle injury.

His last full season was in 2019, when his 149 catches set an NFL record. In three games last season, he caught 16 passes for 171 yards and three scores.

“We feel good about where he is in terms of his recovery,” Allen said. “When we get him here, hopefully we’ll get the player we’ve had in the past.”

Rookie minicamp was scheduled to end Sunday, and voluntary offseason practices for the entire team, known as offseason workouts, will open on May 23.

Moreau, a New Orleans native who played in college for LSU, played his first four NFL seasons with the Raiders and was considering signing with the Saints as a free agent when team doctors discovered abnormalities that led to a diagnosis of Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Moreau, 26, announced in late March that he was stepping away from football to focus on his health, but with his prognosis looking increasingly positive, he agreed to a three-year, $12 million contract on Wednesday with the Saints

“Look, you get this negative information that obviously affects a young person’s life,” Allen said. “However, the prognosis for recovery and the prognosis for a treatment plan have all been extremely positive. So, in that sense, we feel good.”

The signing was a timely one for New Orleans, which dealt tight end Adam Trautman to Denver during the draft.

Report from The Associated Press.

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