Dombrowski, Martin headed into Saints Hall
Wednesday April 02, 2003
By Brian Allee-Walsh
Once a Saint, always a Saint.
That describes the NFL careers of former linemen Jim Dombrowski and Wayne Martin, each of whom played 11 seasons in New Orleans and will be inducted into the Saints Hall of Fame.
Dombrowski (1986-96) and Martin (1989-99) will become the 30th and 31st inductees during informal ceremonies this fall. Their portraits will be displayed in a special wing of the Saints Hall of Fame Museum in Kenner.
Additionally, Jim Fast, a longtime chaplain for the Saints, has been chosen as the 15th recipient of the annual Joe Gemelli Fleur De Lis award in recognition of his contributions to the franchise.
The three were cited by a panel of local media.
"It's nice to be remembered for the effort and the work that you did while you were playing," said Dombrowski, a former first-round pick in 1986 from Virginia. "We had some pretty good teams when I was here. Credit that to Jim Finks, Jim Mora and a good group of players we had playing for us.
"I was around for the first winning season in '87, the first division title in '91 and the first playoff game in '87. The only firsts that we didn't get were the first playoff victory and first Super Bowl championship. We had teams good enough to do it back then, but we fell short."
Dombrowski spent his first three seasons at left tackle, then shifted to left guard. He ranks ninth on the Saints' all-time list for games played with 151 and holds the team record for most consecutive games played with 147.
Martin, a former first-round pick in 1989 from Arkansas and a two-time Pro Bowl player, was elected to the Saints Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.
He ranks seventh on the Saints' all-time list for games played with 171 and holds the team record for most consecutive starts with 144. He also ranks second in career sacks by a Saints player with 82.5, behind Rickey Jackson (115).
Dombrowski and Martin were picked to the Saints' 30th and 35th all-time anniversary teams in 1996 and 2001.
"This is a great honor, and I've been blessed," Martin said. "If I could do it over again, I'd play for the Saints. I had a lot of people help me out -- Jim Wilks, Frank Warren, Rickey Jackson. They really helped me out when I first came here. They taught me how to practice. They taught me how to play. I'm glad I came along when I did. It's been a great ride."
Fast served as team chaplain for 18 years. He counseled hundreds of players and coaches during that time and conducted Bible studies and organized chapel and Mass services for members of the organization.
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