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Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; METAIRIE, La. — It all began with the hiring of a rookie head coach and the signing of a quarterback with an injured throwing shoulder. Making Sean Payton and Drew Brees the foundation of the rebuilding Saints may have looked ...

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Old 12-12-2009, 04:06 PM   #1
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METAIRIE, La. — It all began with the hiring of a rookie head coach and the signing of a quarterback with an injured throwing shoulder.

Making Sean Payton and Drew Brees the foundation of the rebuilding Saints may have looked a little risky in 2006, but it started New Orleans on a path from disarray to dominance.

Along the way, there have been a slew of fruitful late-round draft picks and unheralded free-agent signings that have combined to make the Saints what they are. The eighth team in NFL history to start a season 12-0.

“We’ve got a coaching staff that has a mentality that we’re going to bring them guys they can work with and they do a great job of coaching them up and getting the most out of what they have,” Saints general manager Mickey Loomis said this week. “Sean has a particular talent of being able to look at someone and say, this guy’s got this strength and I can use that.”

The Saints, for example, never had to get into a bidding war over 34-year-old safety Darren Sharper or recovering drug abuser Anthony Hargrove. Both signed one-year league minimum contracts with the Saints this year and have played key roles.

Sharper is tied for the NFL lead in interceptions this season with eight, three of which he’s returned for scores. Hargrove has become a regular on the defensive line with a few highlights of his own, including a fumble recovery for a touchdown. His three sacks rank second on the team.
They joined a roster where small colleges players that few knew of when they were drafted became immediate starters and eventually household names in the NFL.

They joined a roster with small-college players few had heard of when they were drafted, but who went on to become starters and eventually household names in the NFL.

Marques Colston played for Hofstra, an FCS school that recently announced it will disband its football program. The former seventh-round choice has 854 yards and eight TDs receiving this season, putting him on pace to surpass 1,000 yards receiving for the third time in four years.

Offensive guard Jahri Evans played at Division II Bloomsburg. He has
started every game since being drafted in the fourth round in 2006.
Then there were the players that Payton kept from the team that had gone 3-13 while displaced by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Right tackle Jon Stinchcomb appeared in only 10 games as a reserve in his first two seasons after being drafted out of Georgia in 2003. He spent 2005 on injured reserve. Payton made him the starter after training camp in 2006, and he’s started every game since on an offensive line that has kept Brees among the NFL’s least-sacked quarterbacks.

“He had a good picture of what he wanted to create from a core group of guys and then began to supplement in areas each year, just building a program,” Stinchcomb said of Payton. “I think he would tell you he based it on good character guys that put team first and that had talent in almost that order.

“It was important for him to start with a guy like Drew Brees who has the highest character. He really embodies the type of player the coach talks about wanting on this team, and you look around this locker room, top to bottom, and that’s what he’s been able to find.”

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Old 12-12-2009, 04:41 PM   #2
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

Its crazy to think of how far we have come since the Sean Payton era began.
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Old 12-12-2009, 06:38 PM   #3
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

The Saints are entering a new era. From the outhouse to penthouse is a lovely thing to see starting to happen. Hopefully we can continue and start drawing quality players to seek out this team. Payton certainly is the man and he deserves a lot of credit for making some sound decisions. We finally have an organization that knows what they are doing.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:34 PM   #4
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

we will get the respect that this city and state deserve, its not our daddy's saints no more.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:41 PM   #5
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

Originally Posted by zachsaints52 View Post
Its crazy to think of how far we have come since the Sean Payton era began.
its a program that we can be proud of for a long time to come ,i can feel it. payton will not tolerate losing. it just feels right now.

p.s. zack you have a great golf coarse up there in abingdon. was there a couple of years back. took in a play and dinner one night, its a nice town.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:54 PM   #6
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

Just goes to show how luck is a big factor:
we drafted a few other small college guys that came and went quickly.
we traded up for Pittman, but UDFA Pierre becomes a star
was Bush one of the building blocks? Jason David?

What I love is that Sean and Loomis keep trying- bring em in and let's see if they can play. No, Rod Coleman and that 400 pounder who lasted 12 minutes didn't make it, but at least we gave it a shot.
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Old 12-12-2009, 09:50 PM   #7
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

Good article, the end is what I believe tells the success of The Saints. As long as Brees is here we should stay consistent and competitive.

“It was important for him to start with a guy like Drew Brees who has the highest character. He really embodies the type of player the coach talks about wanting on this team, and you look around this locker room, top to bottom, and that’s what he’s been able to find.”
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:29 AM   #8
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

Great read.

Thank You Q. For this and all that you do.
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:09 PM   #9
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Re: Building blocks laid for Saints’ foundation in 2006

This is along the lines of the thread regarding are we built to be a dynasty? Does any body know what year we brought Mickey Loomis in? In a very short time frame we've been built to win and continue to win...This team is not a flash in the pan. The Saints are built strong from the inside and they are built to win big.
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