Well, I couldn't possibly have imagined a more perfect way to dash the Saints hopes for the playoffs this season then yesterday's game. It was truly a microcosm of the Saints season - no the Saints as a franchise over the last three years.
To all of those on this board that thought that Haslett magically figured everything out last week b/c we blew out the Giants - think again. Not only has Haslett been unable to put a team on the field that can play for all four quarters of the season (let alone any single game), but his record in the final quarter of the season just keep getting more ridiculous.
Since Haz took the reigns in NO he is 4-11 in the final 4 games of the season. Take away the 2-2 2000 season and in the last three years he is 2-9 with one game to go. In the last two seasons the Saints 5 losses in the final quarter of the season ALL come against teams with LOSING records. You can hem and haw about injuries this and poor refereeing that, dropped passes here, poor execution there, but the bottom line is that any coach who has his team in contention every season, but has that kind of record in the home stretch is not worthy of his position. Period. Haslett may not be on the hotseat, but he certainly deserves to be.
Don't get me wrong. I fully believe that the Saints will go to the playoffs next season with or without Haslett. Simply put, there is just far too much talent on this team for any coach to keep them out next year. (As I write this I can't help but think, if any team in the history of the league were able to prove me wrong in that statement it is the New Orleans Saints). Hell, I even think AB might compete for a spot in the Pro Bowl. In any case, my biggest fear right now is that Haslett & Co. stay in the Big Easy. This is not a coaching staff capable of getting us over the hump in terms of SUPER BOWL contention - and to me, that is the ultimate goal. They had the talent to make the playoffs this year and last. Next season I believe they will have the talent to win it all, but a coach that might lead us to a mere wild card and early elimination.
Please Mr. Benson, do all of us long-suffering fans a favor and make the change before it is too late. Don't allow this talent to be squandered any longer. Swing for the fences, b/c we certainly have the personnel capable of putting one out of the park.
Imagine what a Parcells or Belichick could do with this much talent.
Dallas-Quincy Carter and Troy Hambrick- Think he\'d like a Brooks/McAllister combo instead?
New England- Troy Brown, David Patten?, Antowain Smith? Kevin Faulk?
Think Mr Bill would kill for a McAllister, Horn, Pathon, Stallworth combo?
I now officially think we have enough talent to go all the way (of course, a player or two would help).
It has become very clear that the weak link on the Saints isn\'t Brooks, isn\'t O-line, isn\'t D-line, isn\'t LB\'s (although we could use an upgrade), isn\'t CB\'s (although we need some youth), isn\'t kickers, cheerleaders, waterboys, city, fans or a new stadium.
It is as simple as an overpriced overrated coach that, due to his recent extension, we are apparently stuck with.
A new OC and/or a new DC is about the best we can realistically hope for. I don\'t see them cutting ties with McCarthy so I think Venturi is probably the odd man out. Whats odd/perplexing to me is Venturi probably did a better job of coaching his guys this year than Haz and McCarthy combined. Of course thats still not saying much.
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