While Saints HC Sean Payton won’t yet rule out Mark Ingram for Sunday’s game at winless St. Louis, he said Chris Ivory would be activated from the team’s physically unable to perform list for the game.
“Mentally he understands and knows what we’re doing. He did well today,” Payton said. “He had some good runs today. I think it’s just the football aspect of getting comfortable with all the little things that come with it. You can be in shape and yet there’s still that aspect of trying to be in football shape.”
Therefore, Payton said, if Ivory plays, he would not necessarily slide into all of the plays that normally would have been called for Ingram, who leads the Saints both in carries (85) and yards rushing (329) this season.
“I don’t think you can realistically go into the game and say he could potentially end up with 22 carries or 18 carries. I think you have to monitor that, but there are some of the same things that he does that Mark would be inclined to do,” Payton said of Ivory, who rushed for 716 yards in 12 games last season.
“We’ve run Mark in our goal line and short-yard packages. The switch if it were to occur would be pretty clean in those areas. It’s an area that (Ivory) was very good at a year ago,” Payton said.
It sounds as if Payton has already decided that Ivory will be the goal-line back with Ingram out. If Payton is being above board, it would put a dent in Pierre Thomas's upside against a bad Rams rush defense.