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New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; New Orleans Saints General Manager Mickey Loomis said Friday that only in rare instances where they see the possibility of a turnaround will the team take an active interest in players with baggage. In fact, an emphasis on player character ...

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Old 03-12-2010, 11:15 PM   #1
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New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

New Orleans Saints General Manager Mickey Loomis said Friday that only in rare instances where they see the possibility of a turnaround will the team take an active interest in players with baggage. In fact, an emphasis on player character has been a guiding principle for the Saints' turnaround from a 3-13 team in 2005 to Super Bowl champions.

Indeed, in conversations with Coach Sean Payton after Hurricane Katrina, Loomis said the team's brain trust decided to seek players with that combination of intelligence and grit above even pure athletic talent or speed.

"We felt like character was even more important for our team," Loomis said. "That's been true from the first meeting I had with Sean and we've continued to have that emphasis."

While the team will occasionally take on a player with issues it believes capable of a turnaround - he cited defensive tackle Anthony Hargrove as an example - that kind of mindset will also play a role in the team's roster moves through the league's ongoing free agency derby and next month's draft.

That complicated the picture somewhat with the Saints coming off their emotional ride to victory in Super Bowl XLIV, Loomis said.

"There are some conflicting emotions that go on when you evaluate your own team," he said. "You would like to continue to have success with the guys that brought you to this point."

But that isn't always possible, Loomis said. A case in point was linebacker Scott Fujita, the first player Loomis and Payton brought to New Orleans in 2006 in part because he so well met their definition of the sort of player the franchise would rely on. Fujita got a $14 million offer from the Cleveland Browns and while Loomis said he was delighted one of his favorite players hit a big payday as an executive he was not going to match it.

Which brought him around to the other defining aspect, money. "We always have a budget, that's no different than any year," he said during the 2009 wrap-up press confence each team is required by the NFL to hold.

Loomis said that is true even though the league is now entering a season without a salary cap as a result of the expiration of its current collective bargaining agreement with the players' union. While there is some uncertainty about how protracted negotiations might impace the 2011 season, Loomis said the Saints are moving forward with the expectation a labor agreement will be reached.

The draft, which this year will be stretched across three days and begin on a Thursday evening in prime-time, is also an exciting prospect. Loomis said the Saints run to Super Bowl XLIV meant it took the team longer than usual to get on the same page with college prospects it likes but that no one should assume the Saints aren't on top of it now.

"I think we've shown in our history that we're not afraid to trade up, trade down, or trade out," he said, unable to suppress a smile. "I'm looking forward to it. It's exciting."

New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions | - NOLA.com



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Last edited by hagan714; 03-13-2010 at 05:52 AM..
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Old 03-13-2010, 08:44 AM   #2
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

Loveit. I like how Loomis says enough but not too much. I like how he puts it over to the fans and press.
All our answers are right there from the one in charge at his job.
He all but said that thinking realistically, within a set budget, players who fit in the Payton way and of character and making the team they want and can work with is it , and this is a business and not a feel good story.

Kudos to Saints Scounting Dept. too. I would NOT want their job.

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Old 03-13-2010, 08:42 PM   #3
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

SO many things to consider when drafting or picking free agents
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Old 03-13-2010, 11:45 PM   #4
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

always loved the quote from sean payton during his first press conference

"we aren't looking for the best 11 guys. we are looking for the right 11 guys"
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Old 03-14-2010, 12:08 AM   #5
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

i hope loomis has calmed a few of us down to where we were wondering what was going on with letting fujita walk. there's younger blood out there for the future in new orleans. and not being stingy but careful not to give the bank away and cost us later.
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Old 03-15-2010, 01:52 PM   #6
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

People with high character seem to have fewer ups and downs than the high profile and questionable characters.
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Old 03-17-2010, 07:42 AM   #7
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

The guy just front office managed us into a Super Bowl, last I checked.
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Old 03-17-2010, 07:43 AM   #8
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Re: New Orleans Saints GM Mickey Loomis says character will loom large in personnel decisions

Yes...character will loom large. That character, however, is Benjamin Franklin.
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