WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W. Va. — It doesn’t matter if it’s two of his team’s starting safeties and its No. 1 cornerback trying to push him around — backup Saints wide receiver Charles Hawkins won’t stand for it.
He left no about that after hauling in a pass from fourth-string quarterback Logan Kilgore during a drill that pitted the signal-caller and several reserves on offense against the 1s on defense. Hawkins’ reception marked Kilgore’s third-straight completion of the drill, and the receiver was entangled with safety Rafael Bush at the end of the play.
Mutual shoving ensued. Then, star cornerback Keenan Lewis got in Hawkins’ face. And Hawkins subsequently re-engaged Bush and clashed with safety Kenny Vaccaro, exchanging pushes and the like before the rest of their team rushed over to separate the fracas.
“DBs stick together!” Vaccaro was overheard shouting in Hawkins’ direction as things calmed down.
Hawkins afterward assured his differences with Bush, Lewis and Vaccaro ended on the practice field at The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia, where training camp has been held since it opened July 24.
“It’s just a part of the competition — we are all brother, teammates,” he said. “It’s just friendly competition. We left it all on the field.”
Yet he also said, “Everyone on this team has a chip on their shoulder. I do, too. I’ll fight anybody.”
A native New Orleanian and alum of Southern University in Baton Rouge, Hawkins is vying for a spot under virtual roster locks Marques Colston, Kenny Stills and Brandin Cooks at receiver. He’s seen a lot of action returning punts and kickoffs in drills, and he’s had success with long catches and ones in traffic throughout camp.
His main competition includes Nick Toon, Joseph Morgan, Andy Tanner, Brandon Coleman and Seantavius Jones.