Report: Michael Thomas ignored Saints coaches' calls for 3 months
The two-time All-Pro ignored calls from his coaches for three months before rejoining the Saints in June when they discovered he required ankle surgery, reports Jeff Duncan of The Times-Picayune, citing multiple sources.
Thomas battled ligament damage in his left ankle throughout the 2020 season. The team advised him to undergo surgery after the campaign, reports Duncan, but Thomas sought a second opinion from a doctor who suggested rehab and therapy.
The team and Thomas reportedly agreed in March on a three-month rehabilitation plan for the 28-year-old. But check-in calls from Saints head coach Sean Payton, receivers coach Curtis Johnson, and then-trainer Beau Lowery went unanswered over the next three months, according to Duncan.
The Saints then reportedly learned in June that Thomas' ankle still hadn't healed.
Thomas is scheduled to miss 10-12 weeks following his procedure in an important transition year for New Orleans, with the team looking for Jameis Winston or Taysom Hill to replace Drew Brees as its starting quarterback.
Payton expressed frustration with the situation when he spoke to the media last week.
"Obviously, we would have liked (the surgery) to have happened earlier than later, and, quite honestly, it should have," he said.