Former Red Wolves suiting up at 2022 Saints Training Camp

Arkansas State football alum Kirk Merritt is fighting for a spot on the Saints 53-man roster.
Arkansas State football alum Kirk Merritt is fighting for a spot on the Saints 53-man roster.(Source: KAIT)
Published: Jul. 28, 2022 at 3:03 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 29, 2022 at 8:04 AM CDT
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METAIRIE, La. (KAIT) - Region 8 Sports made one more stop before leaving Louisiana.

We saw two Arkansas State alums that are suiting up at Saints Training Camp. Demario Davis and Kirk Merritt were on the field Wednesday morning in Metairie.

It’s a homecoming story for Merritt. He signed with New Orleans in the offseason. #85 grew up in the area before becoming a two-time All-Sun Belt receiver with Arkansas State.

“It’s a surreal moment for me and my family, friends as well,” Merritt said after Wednesday’s practice. “Just coming out here. I went to middle school right over there. It’s a crazy feeling, I can’t really explain it though. I couldn’t say no to the Saints, I’ve been a Saints fan since I was 6 years old.”

Merritt started his NFL career as an undrafted free agent and worked his way to the Dolphins practice squad. He had 2 touchdowns in the 2021 preseason and recorded his first regular season reception in Week 9.

Now he’s fighting for a spot on the Saints 53-man roster.

“Just staying consistent,” Merritt said. “Working on everything, there’s a lot to work on. That’s one thing Kodi Burns always talks about, is that we can be the top guy all the time, but there’s always more ladders to climb. He had an example about the iPhone. I dunno, we’re on iPhone 14, 13? And we started with iPhone 1. There’s always a chance to get better.”

Demario’s final game with A-State was the 2012 Bowl. 10 years later, he’s one of the best linebackers in the NFL. Davis has recorded at least 100 tackles in 5 straight seasons. He’s experienced the playoffs and had a interception in the 2019 NFC Championship Game.

We asked Saints head coach Dennis Allen about Demario and Kirk.

“Demario has been outstanding for us,” Allen added. “Continues to be outstanding for us. Great leader, great player, glad he’s on our team. And then obviously Kirk Merritt is a guy that’s trying to prove himself a little bit. Thought he made some strides in the spring. And he’s working here now and we’re just evaluating as he goes along.”

Former Red Wolves on 2022 NFL Training Camp Rosters

Demario Davis (Saints LB)

Kirk Merritt (Saints LB)

J.D. McKissic (Commanders RB)

William Bradley-King (Commanders DL)

Forrest Merrill (Chargers DL)

JoJo Ozougwu (Buccaneers LB)

Omar Bayless (Chiefs WR)

Aaron Donkor (Seahawks LB)

Jerry Jacobs (Lions DB)

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