Friday, August 13, 2010

A bad week for the Saints

The Louisiana Superdome, home of the world champion New Orleans Saints
It's been a bad week for the Saints. Yes, the Who Dat Nation was definitely fired up for the first pre-season game against the New England Patriots and their quarterback Tom Brady last night. But it was not to be a final victory. They made several mistakes on the field, some of which might have resulted in a different outcome than the 27-24 win the Pats enjoyed at game's end. Down 24-7 at one point in the third quarter, the Saints second and third teams showed real depth in battling back. The highlight reel will show Larry Beaver's 97-yard return run for a touchdown, but it should also show his muffed fair catch that almost resulted in a turnover. The fact is Drew Brees and the first team looked a little hesitant, but when it counted they put points on the board. The defense swarmed over New England in the second half, accounting for the fact that New England was unable to put any more points on the board in the final quarter until the final minute of play. The fact is a loss is a loss, whether it's in pre-season or in the regular season. If this serves as a wake-up call to the world champions about where they need to apply fixes, then this close game will have had a positive impact on future games. Aside from the game's outcome, the loss of running back Lynell Hamilton for the season due to a torn ACL in his right knee will be another hit for the team that had such high hopes for him. With the departure of Mike Bell, the running back position will now need to be decided between Chris Ivory and P. J. Hill. Another hit that the team took was a spiritual one. Earlier this week Dave Dixon, the "father of the Superdome" and a figure instrumental in securing the NFL Saints franchise back in 1966 died after a long battle. Dixon was a legendary figure whose impact on the local scene has never been truly acknowledged by people outside of New Orleans, but his legacy in the form of the Louisiana Superdome, the nine Superbowls played there and other sports events like the BCS Championship Bowl and NCAA Final Four played there, will forever remain as to his import to the local economy and the spirit of the city.

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