A year ago
I ran this article a year ago .
Rather amusing now ..... or is it ????
posted on 30/12/2002 at 11:00
One PFW columnist writes :
I couldnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t be more pleased that the Saints missed the playoffs. There isnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t a team around that was less deserving of a spot in the postseason than New Orleans, and they really got what they deserved. Losing to the Vikings two weeks ago was bad enough, but losing last week to the Bengals was outright embarrassing. Then, needing a win just to stay alive for a playoff spot, the Saints came out flatter than Gwyneth Paltrow vs. the Panthers.
This is the second straight season the Saints have gone into the toilet in December, although this yearÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢s bunch didnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t have the soap opera drama of the 2001 version. At some point, you canÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t just blame the players anymore. Head coach Jim Haslett has to take some of the heat, because he just didnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t have his boys ready to play the last three weeks. Haslett has been bad-mouthing Saints fans recently because of all their negativity. He said that people need to spread the blame around more than just dumping it on QB Aaron Brooks.
Well, Jim, what do they have to cheer about? And how about shouldering some of the blame yourself?
Haslett should be embarrassed with the way his team finished the season. HeÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢s a former linebacker, and he should know that defense wins championships. But the Saints never got their act together when it counted this season, and Haslett has to take some of the heat. Maybe itÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢s time to find someone else who can motivate the players. Maybe itÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢s time for Haslett to realize that he allowed his team to peak at the wrong time of the season ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â€Â namely the first half of the season.
The Saints are sending five players to the Pro Bowl, but no one to the playoffs. That kind of individual talent has to be molded into a team, but Haslett didnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t know how or simply couldnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢Â‚Â¬Ã¢Â„Â¢t turn the trick. And now it might be time for New Orleans to look elsewhere for a coach.
A year ago
The really disturbing part to me is that last year at this time everyone was outraged about this team. Still, most people said, \"Give Haz one more chance.\" With the fifth most money under the cap available everyone said to look for seven or 8 new starters on this team. Fans and the media both expected Haslett to \"revamp\" the D and the general concensus was - next year the D just has to get enough better to help the O bring this team to the playoffs... and most everyone was saying \"NO EXCUSES\" this preseason.
Now, after another disappointing year, more squandered talent and lost opportunity, there is no question to most fans where the problem with this team lies - Loomis, Haz, McCarthy, and Venturi. Yet, fans seem so deflated that everyone appears to have resigned themselves to mediocrity. Last year this time there was a eral feeling that this team had a chance to play for a Super Bowl down the line, but we couldn\'t continue to waste opportunities. A year later, and now everyone seems to have accepted the fate of 7-9, 8-8, or 9-7 for the foreseeable future.
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