Saints TE Jared Cook excited to play with Drew Brees, Michael Thomas

Seth Dunlap
May 23, 2019 - 3:20 pm
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The New Orleans Saints believe they may have found a pass-catching weapon at the tight end position that they've lacked since Jimmy Graham was traded to Seattle.  The Saints signed Jared Cook in free agency this offseason, with the 32-year old coming off arguably the best season of his career while in Oakland.  

RELATED:  Photo Gallery: Saints OTAs May 23, 2019 

Cook is expected to be a pivotal piece of the Saints offense, which brings back most key layers from last year's run to the NFC Championship game.  While it's never an easy transition for a player coming into this complex offense, Cook believes his time in the Raiders system will help the acclimation process.

"A lot of the terminology is similar," he said of his time in Oakland.  "I think it's just more of getting a rapport with Drew (Brees) and getting his chemistry down, understanding how they run things here and what they like."

Speaking of Brees, he's always a player that Cook has admired during his career.  Now, with the chance to catch passes from the future Hall of Fame quarterback, he's using every opportunity in the spring to create chemistry that can translate into the season.

"He's advanced in what he does, and he's typical in what he likes in things.  He's a great quarterback and that's what I've always thought," Cook said.  "I just think he's very detailed oriented.  He takes the little things and strives to be great.  He's very particular in how he likes his routes and where he wants you to be."

Cook had many offers in free agency, but chose to come to New Orleans and play in an offense that values, and expects, high-level production from their tight ends.  If last year was any indication, Cook may not be slowing down at he approaches his mid-30s.  He had career-highs in receptions (68), receiving yards (896), and touchdowns (6) with averaging 13.2 yards per catch on just over 100 targets from Raiders quarterbacks.

"(The Saints have) always been a very tight end friendly offense.  I just thought this was a great place for me to come extend my career and shine for a little bit."

Adding to the appeal was the opportunity for Cook to play across from Michael Thomas, one of the best wide receivers in the league.  The combination of Thomas and Cooks could present major matchup problems for opposing defenses, something Cook said helped him decide to sign with New Orleans.

"Yeah, absolutely.  Having Mike and Alvin (Kamara) was pretty much the one-two combo last year I felt I could come in and help Mike, and at the same time he could help me.  We could relieve some pressure off each other.  We can make this a high powered offense one again this year.  But having Mike on the other side of the field is going to be an opening for us."

Watch Cook's post-OTA comments in the video below, or by clicking here.

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