Monday, February 08, 2010

Super Saints

What else would I post about today but the Saints winning the Super Bowl. Who Dat!

I wasn’t a Saints fan from the beginning like so many others down here. I moved to the New Orleans area in 1986 and certainly became a fan then. And the Saints had some good years at that time under Coach Jim Mora. Mora always had great defenses and generally less than stellar offenses, and we won quite a few games but could never get over the hurdle of winning our first playoff game.

That first playoff win came under Coach Jim Haslett, but while we had a pretty exciting offense over the next couple of years it seemed like the team got out from under Haslett’s control and we just couldn’t be consistent. In fact, that lack of consistency has been a consistent trademark of the Saints during the years that I’ve been a fan. Too often it seemed to me, that when we needed someone to step up, many players took a step back instead. Rooting for a team like that can be agony year in and year out.

But when Sean Payton came things took a turn for the better. He put together a staff and a team in which there were lots of players ready to step forward when needed. Not only ready, but eager to step forward. The culture sure has changed for the Saints over the last four years. Now you don’t hear people saying that: “The Saints found a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.” Now, even when the Saints are down, as they were in the first quarter against the Colts, you still think, and ‘feel,’ “we can do this. This team may lose at times, and they may make mistakes, but they just don’t give up.

The Super Bowl showed, too, that this is as genuine of a “team” as I’ve ever seen in the NFL. Sure Brees was the MVP for the game and I would never say he didn’t deserve it, but every player on that team did their part. Pierre Thomas made a great run for a touchdown. Bush got a couple of needed big runs. Colston made some hard catches. Lance Moore made an incredible grab for that 2-point conversion. Porter got the interception. Greer played so well they didn’t even throw in his direction. Vilma crushed some runners. Shanle and Fujita did too. The offensive and defensive lines played their hearts out. Shockey caught a touchdown. David Thomas caught a ball. Bell made a good run. Hartley set a field goal record. Our special teams covered well and recovered that onside kick.

And the coaching staff did a wonderful job. Payton and his crew came to either win or lose, not merely to show. They coached an aggressive game that paid off with this young and aggressive team

This team definitely deserves the recognition as “Super Saints.”


BernardL said...

The on-side kick was phenomenal. That took guts.

Lana Gramlich said...

There was far less screaming than I expected. Congratulations, hon. :)

David Cranmer said...

Being from New York, I can't say I was really rooting for either team but the Saints put on a damn good show.

Steve Malley said...

Way to go, Saints!!!

Michelle's Spell said...

Whoo-hoo! Was thrilled to see the Saints win. Let the parties begin!

Charles Gramlich said...

Bernardl, Sean Payton has as set on him, I'll agree.

Lana, yes, I did it all! sweetness.

David Cranmer, I liked the fact that it was such a well played game too.

Steve Malley, yes indeed!

Michelle, there are still folks drunk here from last night. And almost no one has a voice.

X. Dell said...

I think Porter's pick-six was the turning point in the game. All year, the Colts have managed to come out on top of games they trailed late (except for the last two, which they lost halfway on purpose). I think of that interception as the shock heard 'round the world.

ivan said...

We all watched it here in the Cold White North and cheered for the underdog Saints.
...But we can't get your original ads here. I have to go to U- tube
to get that priceless clip of two unemployed people, Jay Leno and Oprah, watching the game with the smugly employed Letterman.
Leno during a break:
Just mention my name. Just mention my name!

j said...

It was a GREAT game! There is a photo of Brees with his son that I love. My new favorite (non family) photo!

I wasn't jazzed about the commercials - the Betty White commercial was good though.

jodi said...

Charles-Whoo hoo! BUT--didja catch any of the Puppy Bowl?

Travis Cody said...

I was rooting for the Colts, but they blinked first. That dropped ball on the third down in the first half was the key play. NO took control at that point, and every decision Sean Payton made was the right one. The Saints executed the game plan, and forced the Colts into a few too many mistakes.

Even though my rooting interest came up short, I did enjoy the game. It was fun and competitive.


sage said...

It was a good game and I was rooting for them (the lone voice in a house of Manning idolators)

AvDB said...

I really don't care for football, but (stop throwing things at me) I find it very touching that a team that once thought it might not have a home in N.O. again would win its first Super Bowl ever. I am glad for them--and for all of you guys. You deserve a happy.

Charles Gramlich said...

X. Dell, that certainly sealed the deal. They had a good chance to come back until that one. That really put the pressure on them.

ivan, lol. that one was kinda funny, although I'm still not sure what the purpose of it was.

jennifer, I liked that pic of Brees too. Yes, the Betty white commercial was my favorite too.

jodi, the puppy bowl? I guess I didn't.

Travis, thanks, yes, I thought it was a really good game. The Saints really had only one drop, very early, while the Colts had a couple. In a tight game like that one extra mistake can seal the deal. I always root for the Colts when they're not playing the Saints.

sage, the Mannings really ARE the first family of football I think.

Avery DeBow, For a minute there I thought you said you didn't care for football. Then I realized you were just pulling an old man's leg. ha ha haha. See, I'm laughing.

Spy Scribbler said...

I was rooting for the Saints, since my husband grew up there. Oddly, he was rooting for the Colts. No idea why.

Great game.

steve on the slow train said...

Up here in northern Indiana, where most of us are Bears fans, we were ambivalent about the Colts. I first looked in the second quarter, when it looked as if it would be a Colts blowout. Then Indy blew a fourth-down conversion and From then on, I was rooting for the Saints.

the walking man said...

I still think you and Travis should have met in the middle and then I may have seen the big glow coming from the South West.

Glad for you and NO though. I see now what a big deal it is and not just another Stupor Bowl.

Lisa said...

Congratulations. It sounds like a season to remember.

Unknown said...

I'm so happy for the Saints and for New Orleans!

Charles Gramlich said...

Natasha Fondren, A lot of folks love Peyton Manning. Maybe that was it.

steve on the slow train, the second quarter really started the Saints train to rolling. And not slowly.

Mark, this town has barely even quietened down. Traffic was still light today because some folks still aren't going to work. And a lot of places are shutting down at 3:00 for the big Saints parade at 5:00. Amazing.

Ocean Girl, I may even buy the season retrospectus this year.

Gaston Studio, you are in the majority in the US it would appear. and maybe around the world.

pattinase (abbott) said...

It was a gutsy game and one of the best I remember.

laughingwolf said...

'course, a bit o'luck here'n there helped, too! :D

well done, saints!

Tyhitia Green said...

Congratulations, Charles. I don't watch football, but you do sound excited, as did most people I know. ;-)

Charles Gramlich said...

Pattinase, yes, Sean Payton has got some fortitude.

Laughingwolf, no one wins out in the NFL without some luck, I don't think.

Demon hunter, I am. Surprisingly so, really. I'm not usually so enthusiastic.

Cloudia said...

I been posting Geaux Saints here for WEEKS!!!

SO excited!


Aloha, Cher!

Comfort Spiral

Sarah Hina said...

I thought of you, and Travis Erwin, while watching the game, and reading your FB updates. :)

Big congratulations, Charles. I hope it feels every bit as good as you dreamed it would.

Charles Gramlich said...

Cloudia, thanks. The Saints have been kind of like Hawaii's football team. They haven't gotten the respect they deserved.

sarah, it feels pretty good, although I don't think I'm nearly as excited as most of the folks are down here. They had over 100,000 folks show up for the victory parade today.

Erik Donald France said...

Woot wooot! I couldn't agree more. Fantastic. Sean Payton's at co.'s coaching was really inspired during the SB. It was inspiring after that thud of an opening. Amazing. Kudos!

Barrie said...

I thought of you during the Super Bowl. Congrats!

Charles Gramlich said...

Erik, he's definitely a gambler but more often than not it pays off.

Barrie, it was cool!

Greg said...

congrats! it was a great game, and now the Saints have their first win. enjoy the celebrations!

Mary Witzl said...

I don't really get football either, but I know how you feel. I'll never forget the rush when San Francisco's 49ers won the Superbowl.

Charles Gramlich said...

Greg, indeed! Hurray.

Mary, The 49ers won quite a few as I remember.

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