Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports

Brandin Cooks on return to New Orleans: 'No bad blood'

Ryan Hannable
September 14, 2017 - 6:00 am

FOXBORO -- From the outside, things didn't seem right between the Saints and receiver Brandin Cooks.

Cooks was one of the most dynamic receivers in the league at just 23 years old, and after last season there were multiple rumors of the team looking to trade him. It just seemed odd a player of such magnitude was in the middle of trade talks after just his third year.

Eventually Cooks was traded to the Patriots and the 23-year-old will return to New Orleans on Sunday in just his second game with his new team.

Speaking on Wednesday, it there don't appear to be any lingering issues between the two sides.

"I've got a ton of respect for Coach [Sean] Payton still," Cooks said. "We left off on a great note. I love him. He's a great coach, and he did me well when we were there. So there's no bad blood at all."

He also praised his former quarterback, Drew Brees.

"That's my guy right there," he said. "We're family. There's no bad blood there, either."

On a conference call earlier in the day, Brees said he expected Cooks to get a good reception from the crowd and old team.

"I think a lot of people liked him and respected him," he said. "He was a big part of our team and our offense the last couple of years. Nothing but love and respect for him."

Although the whole situation was a bit strange, the Saints got a first-round draft pick and Cooks seems to be enjoying his new team. 

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