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BillyC 12-09-2003 08:19 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
SportingNews senior NFL editor - The number one problem with the New Orleans Saints is player churn. For the last several years, New Orleans has had tremendous player turnover. Whatever the reason, it’s too much turnover, whether it’s the coaches being unhappy with the players or the players themselves deciding they do not want to be there. No other team has anything close to the player churn of the New Orleans Saints
In the past I've tried to defend Haslett for some questionable moves that he has made. But, one thing I know is that if we still had some of the players back, it would have allowed us to address some of the short comings we now have on the team.

First let me say that I know in today's free agent world that teams are going to lose players. But, you can't let all of your Pro Bowl players go and expect to replace them overnight. That is unless you go out in free agency and sign other Pro Bowl players. We all know that hasn't happened.

Also, the reasons we lost the Pro Bowl players is troubling. Willie Roaf was nothing but a true professional when he was here. I don't know exactly what happened to make him leave, but I am familar with the rumors. Then the Kyle Turley situation was another one. Kyle was hot-headed and presented his own set of worries but he was a solid if not unspectacular player. For whatever reason those are 2 quality offensive linemen that are no longer here. Somehow, I think Haslett and Co. could have done something to keep one, if not both of those players.

Then you have Joe Johnson. It now appears like that was a great move because of the injury to Joe Johnson. But, Joe was an Pro Bowl player here and I don't think becuase Joe got hurt is a justifiable reason for cutting the guy. Now they might have had a good reason for cutting him, but never the less, we lost another Pro Bowl player.

The most trobling part of losing those players is that we had to go out in free agency and the draft and address those needs, when we already had Pro Bowl players in those positions. Now 3-years later, we have huge holes in other areas that should have been addressed a long time ago.

The other troubling thing is that some of the players that Haslett signed don't appear to be the answer and it looks like we are going to have to address those positions AGAIN.

I think Haslett has some very good qualities. Maybe getting a proven GM would help him out. Something has to change for better or worse.

[Edited on 9/12/2003 by BillyC]

BlackandBlue 12-09-2003 08:36 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
And here I was thinking that the #1 problem with the Saints has been our turnover ratio.
I\'m tired of hindsight posts, and second guessing some of the player moves. Nothing can be done about it now. Turley was hot-headed, and turned down a fat contract to leave- out of our control. Willie Roaf was a victim of circumstance, where there is smoke, there is fire, and I don\'t think it would have helped his career by staying in the Big Easy. As of late, our offensive line has been playing just fine. Joe Johnson was a locker room cancer, who I\'m glad to see gone. Charles Grant hasn\'t done bad in his place, either. Glover, I miss, because I think he would fit in perfectly with the system that they have now, and with Glover playing opposite Sullivan, this front four would be one of the best units in football (as long as Howard stays healthy). Our linebacking crew and secondary are horrendous. The mental mistakes this team makes are unfathomable. I look at this team on paper, think about some of the plays that have been made in many of the close games we have played this year, and cannot, for the life of me, figure out why this team is sitting at 6-7.

BrooksMustGo 12-09-2003 08:38 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints

That\'s a great post.

Let\'s not forget a few other guys we should have kept while we\'re making a list.

LaRoi Glover--If he plays like this a few more years, he\'s a hall of famer.
Sammy Knight--say what you like about him being slow. He could tackle in the open field.

But you\'re definately right about not addressing the vacancies created by dumping these players. Why is it that since letting Glover go, we are drafting/signing a new DT every year? That\'s just crazy to me.

So let me get my prediction in early. If Jim Haslett is still the coach during this draft (and sadly I think he will be), then write it down. The New Orleans Saints trade up to select Ken Veal--DT--Georgia Bulldogs.

If we had a lick of sense we\'d make a real run on Champ Bailey. I think the 49ers are going to let TO go and keep Peterson, but if it goes the other way, we could have a VERY successful free agency if we picked no other players than these 2 guys. Would sure give us a LOT of draft freedom. Not going to happen, but it would be smart.

[Edited on 9/12/2003 by BrooksMustGo]

D_it_up 12-09-2003 09:21 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
When did the Saints ever have Dominick Davis?

saint5221 12-09-2003 09:36 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
He did play at LSU but it hardly qualifies that the Saints let him get away by allowing the Texans to draft him in the 4th round this year.

D_it_up 12-09-2003 09:41 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
Thanks, 5221. I thought that was the scenario. I didn\'t think that the Saints ever had him.

JKool 12-09-2003 10:17 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
I couldn\'t agree more with the idea presented here, Billy.

I don\'t think this is a hind-sight problem. It points out two problems. First, and one that everyone has thought is a CURRENT problem for this team: coaching. What it says is that our coaches don\'t work hard enough to keep players on task; thus, they get distracted by ridiculous things, and this leads to \"trouble in the locker room.\" That is, when everyone says the coaches are who are failing our boys, we can now point to something a bit more solid: inability to help the team gel AND feel a sense of TEAM.

Secondly, it points to a problem that I think might be a very serious concern shortly: our GM (and company)\'s inability to get quality players (and retain them). With the off season coming up, I certainly think this will be an issue.


frankeefrank 12-09-2003 10:36 AM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
Billy I agree in part,
But to play devil\'s advocate...
Three Words
Nwe England Patriots.

Player Churn does work sometimes, I miss everyone of the guys mentioned here.

[Edited on 9/12/2003 by frankeefrank]

WhoDat 12-09-2003 08:17 PM

SportingNew - #1 Problem with the Saints
The Saints never had Davis, but they did draft Marc Bulger. How much does that hurt right now? Imagine what that kid could be doing in this offense over the past two seasons. OUCH.

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