Two weeks ago, Drew Brees called Pierre Thomas the "best all-purpose back in the league." That's lofty praise from an important member of the organization, but we're still waiting to see where Thomas fits in the New Orleans Saints' offense.
Thomas had the most touches of any Saints running back last season. That's likely to change.
Mark Ingram and Khiry Robinson are working ahead of Thomas, who is now taking snaps with the second team. Ingram and Robinson both looked strong splitting first-half reps against the Rams in Friday's preseason opener. Thomas did not make the trip to St. Louis for unspecified reasons.
All that said, this shouldn't be seen as an indictment of Thomas or a sign of impending doom. Thomas still appears to be the man to inherit the pass-catching role once held down by Darren Sproles.
"He's one of the best screen runners there is, ever," Brees said during the first week of training camp. "He does such a great job of timing, setting up his blocks, just hitting those seams and hitting the sidewalk. He does a phenomenal job at it."
Thomas has well-rounded skills and is a perfect fit for the offense. He might not get as many carries as last season, but he'll still have a role -- potentially a big one.