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this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Saints prescribing a full dose of Stallworth Saturday, August 14, 2004 John DeShazier He's in the right city, but too often has been in the wrong profession. The tease act isn't quite the same when the performer instead is supposed ...

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Old 08-14-2004, 09:55 AM   #1
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Stallworth article.......

Saints prescribing a full dose of Stallworth
Saturday, August 14, 2004
John DeShazier
He's in the right city, but too often has been in the wrong profession. The tease act isn't quite the same when the performer instead is supposed to be making his living as a standout NFL receiver.

So Donté Stallworth is going to have to stop flashing a little talent here and a little speed there, spending almost as much time in the dressing room as on the stage, and be the full-time player the Saints envisioned him being when they made him a first-round pick in 2002.

Obviously, the team believes the show-a-little-leg dance will cease because Stallworth has been handed the starting position opposite three-time Pro Bowler Joe Horn, beginning with Friday night's exhibition opener against the Jets at the Superdome. Which means he has been handed a significant vote of confidence, given that the three-year veteran has played in 24 of a possible 32 games, and has started just 10 of them.

"I've been doing good," Stallworth said after Friday's cameo appearance, in which he had one carry for 24 yards. "I'm still learning. I've got a great group of guys around me. We have a lot of weapons on this team."

He's expected to be one of the main ones, which is why he's in his position. But Stallworth being moved into the starting lineup isn't anything that was unexpected, and if it caught some off guard, it was because they were a tad naive.

The Saints have invested a lot of time and money in him. There's no way the franchise isn't going to give him every opportunity to excel, and if there's disagreement with the way he was added to the starting lineup, there at least must be agreement that the Saints have to find out what they have in him.

Check that. The team knows, to an extent, what it has in Stallworth. What needs to be learned is if it can have more of him, because a steady dose could be an adrenaline injection into an offense that already is expected to be potent.

"We have a lot of threats on this offense, so having another one won't hurt," he said.

But that steady dose has been elusive.

So far, leg and ankle injuries have reduced Stallworth to the player some feared he might be after being stricken with some of the same ailments in college at Tennessee -- a part-time headline-grabber, able to stretch defenses and produce big games and to stress his hamstring and produce nothing from the sideline.

His numbers look good. But when those 67 receptions, 1,079 yards and 11 touchdowns are spread out over two seasons, they lose some of the shine.

Those are totals Stallworth should be approaching in a single season, digits the Saints believe he can if he's on the field. And perhaps he will, given the wealth of talent he possesses and the experience he hopefully has gained in his first two seasons. The man can flat-out run, and there is no substitute for game-breaking speed.

But there's the not-so-small matter of staying on the field, something Stallworth hasn't been able to do enough of so far. He can't help the Saints from the training room, or on an exercise bike, or wearing sweats on Sundays.

"That has been my main emphasis this offseason, making sure my hamstrings and body will be OK," he said. "The main thing I did different has been how I've taken care of my body."

He'll ice down after workouts. He'll spend time in the hot tub. He stretches after practice.

"I'm just doing little things I learned from the veterans," Stallworth said.

Little things that the Saints hope will get him on stage more often, and keep him there.

. . . . . . .
Sorry about that,I had to go back and copy the complete article for you.

[Edited on 14/8/2004 by JOESAM2002]
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Old 08-14-2004, 10:11 AM   #2
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Stallworth article.......

Hey, Joe it gave me a syntax error when trying to open the link, but I got the jest of the story. He had a nice run last night and I think Bouman only threw to him one other time and overthrew the damn ball, which might have been a touchdown.

If Stallworth only touches the ball an average of 3 or 4 times a game and averages a touchdown each game, I\'m cool with that.
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