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this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; The Way We Hear It Blame for Saints’ troubles doesn’t fall only on Haslett New Orleans There was mild surprise last week when Saints head coach Jim Haslett wasn’t fired by owner Tom Benson in the wake of a 32-21 ...

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Old 12-13-2004, 12:15 PM   #1
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The Way We Hear It

Blame for Saints’ troubles doesn’t fall only on Haslett

New Orleans

There was mild surprise last week when Saints head coach Jim Haslett wasn’t fired by owner Tom Benson in the wake of a 32-21 loss to the Panthers, a game that wasn’t as close as the score suggests. In fact, we’re told that there is a 50-50 chance that Haslett could actually hang on to the job beyond this season as long as he agrees to major changes in his staff. Defensive coordinator Rick Venturi has been feeling the heat for coaching the worst defense in the NFL in almost every major category, and Venturi likely would be the first to go if Haslett restructured his staff. Sources say Benson may be more likely to go that route because he doesn’t want to pay off the contracts of a fired coaching staff and take on the responsibility of paying a new group of coaches. The downside is that retaining Haslett and renovating the coaching staff could be met with anger among ticket holders, who would see the Saints as being willing to put forward an inferior product because of money concerns. Yet, no matter what happens with Haslett, team observers say at least 75 percent of the problem with the Saints lies in the poor performances of the scouting department and general manager Mickey Loomis, who our sources believe should be swept out if Benson pulls the trigger on Haslett.

Whispers
Although the Saints are working hard to convince the state of Louisiana to fund a renovation of the Superdome — the league’s recent rejection of a New Orleans bid to host the 2009 Super Bowl helps the Saints’ case — we’re told the stadium isn’t exactly falling apart. It just isn’t up to the standards set by the newest stadiums in the league.

Saints observers believe the team needs to undergo a major overhaul of the linebacking corps before next season, sweeping out everybody but Courtney Watson and possibly Cie Grant.


[Edited on 13/12/2004 by Danno]
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Old 12-13-2004, 12:57 PM   #2
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Not good on the Haslett front. He need sto go with his coordinators. time for a new identity.
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Old 12-13-2004, 02:24 PM   #3
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Amen Whodi.

The downside is that retaining Haslett and renovating the coaching staff could be met with anger among ticket holders, who would see the Saints as being willing to put forward an inferior product because of money concerns.
Damn right. You fire the GM and D coordinator and possibly others on the staff, but don\'t go so far as to get rid of the head coach?

Here\'s my problem. There\'s no question that Haslett has the worst defensive coordinator in the league. I said that the minute Venturi was promoted and I continue to believe that. But so what? Haslett was a DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR in Pittsburgh. Other than yelling at the refs, what\'s he so busy doing during a game that he couldn\'t take the reigns of the defensive play calling from Venturi? He\'s had ample chance to do that and has failed to act. Not to mention that he sits next to Venturi all week watching film and game planning. If there\'s a problem, why isn\'t Haslett pointing it out during the week?

Likewise, you want to blame Loomis? What? I have a hard time believing that Loomis is making the personnel decisions. But for argument\'s sake, let\'s assume that he is. No doubt, the Saints are low on talent at LB, CB to a degree, and at ONE DT position. So the Saints are without talent? This is the MOST talented Saints team EVER. Maybe the teams of the early 90\'s with Wilks, Warren, Martin, Turnbull, Jackson, Swilling, Mills, Johnson, Waymer, Atkins, Mayes, Hilliard, Iron Head, Early, Perrimen, Martin, Hebert, and Dombrowski could be close. Even still, Loomis is a bad GM and needs to go, but he\'s not the reason Haslett has put crap on the field every week. If he goes he\'s a scapegoat. Are you telling me Haslett doesn\'t have the players right now to put a winning team on the field? Or at least a team that\'s in playoff contention in one of the weakest races in decades? Hogwash. Haslett needs to go. I don\'t care if the Saints lure Monte Kiffin to come coach the defense and Tom Moore (O Coordinator from Indy) to run the offense, as long as Haslett is here they\'ll be average... and if not, doesn\'t it seem like they would be succeeding DESPITE Haslett, not BECAUSE of him? It\'s time for a change Mr. Benson.

[Edited on 13/12/2004 by WhoDat]

\"Excuses, excuses, excuses. That’s all anyone ever makes for the New Orleans Saints’ organization.\" - Eric Narcisse


\"Being a Saints fan is almost like being addicted to crack,\"
he said.[i]\"You know you should stop, but you just can\'t.\"
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Old 12-13-2004, 04:07 PM   #4
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I am 100% sooooo with you that this is the most talented team we have ever had, top to bottom. The dome patrol days were close but they were top heavy in stud LB\'s mainly. I still think this team is slightly more talented. I blame coaching 90% for the failures of this team. I\'ll bet there is more talent on this team than 1/2 the teams that\'ll play in the post-season this year. There are still a few holes, One DT spot Sullivan was supposed to own, SLB that Hodge/Allen failed to grasp, ORT that Riley lapsed on, but for the most part this team has enough talent to flirt with 10-11 wins every year.
That blame goes to the big-3 coaches, Haz, Venturi, McCarthy.

1-We have a defense on pace to challenge for the worst in the ENTIRE 40 year history of the NFL.
2-We have an offense that has gone 3-&-out more than ANY team I can remember, ever.
3-As a team we commit more pre-snap (stupid) penalties than ANY Saint team I can remember in 35 years.
4-I can remember the 3 and 4 win teams playing with more heart and desire than these guys.

If anyone does want to point to holes in the personnel, I think one person who isn\'t receiving their fair share of blame is Rick Meuller. He is the main talent scout. But Loomis does also have to take some blame because its his responsibilty to hire/fire the staff.

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Old 12-13-2004, 05:11 PM   #5
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the only thing i disagre with was saying how good turnbull was....

he was horrible.... all he ddi was run straight and then put his hands on his hips and watch as the play went away from him... ricky jackson made him great cause all he had to do was try to get to teh QB.....
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Old 12-13-2004, 05:28 PM   #6
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Damn right. You fire the GM and D coordinator and possibly others on the staff, but don\'t go so far as to get rid of the head coach?

Here\'s my problem. There\'s no question that Haslett has the worst defensive coordinator in the league. I said that the minute Venturi was promoted and I continue to believe that. But so what? Haslett was a DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR in Pittsburgh. Other than yelling at the refs, what\'s he so busy doing during a game that he couldn\'t take the reigns of the defensive play calling from Venturi? He\'s had ample chance to do that and has failed to act. Not to mention that he sits next to Venturi all week watching film and game planning. If there\'s a problem, why isn\'t Haslett pointing it out during the week?

Likewise, you want to blame Loomis? What? I have a hard time believing that Loomis is making the personnel decisions. But for argument\'s sake, let\'s assume that he is. [Edited on 13/12/2004 by WhoDat] [/quote:8f3cfa9190]

I blame LoomBoom, but I also blame Benson for putting FieldCow into the position he is in. Whether you agree or not, FieldCow has the position of power and LoomBoom and the Front office herd are just there to fill the seats.

Let\'s try this scenario on for a minute, before everyone goes off on me.

Picture Hazlett as a D-Coordinator in Pittsburg, doing an adequate and successful job. Picture Big Mule, as a second in command in Seattle, when all of a sudden the ax falls on Ditka and company and these two are put together. Big Mule knows football operations, Hazlett knows coaching, so it\'s a match made in Heaven, Right? Right! For a year things rock along pretty well, you have a good D-Coordinator, LB coach, and the D is cooking. You have an O-Coordinator who is forced on you because of \"friendship\" of the owner with the Green Bay powers and so you find a way to work with him, even though he\'s really not your first choice. Again things are rocking along, fairly well, until you lose your D-Coordinator, LB coach, and the GM is fired because he crossed swords with (of all people) the ticket salesman, former used car GURU, Arnold (Benson\'s Love Child) FieldCow.

If you are now put into the GM spot, the head coach spot, the Director of Player Personnel, who is it that you are going to make sure you do NOT piss off? Three guesses:
1. FieldCow!
2. FieldCow!
3. FieldCow!

Benson is not going to fire Hazlett, but he is going to listen to FieldCow first, last, and foremost; because FieldCow is a car salesman like Uncle Tom. Uncle Tom wants to run this franchise like his AutoPlex, and FieldCow is his guy. Also, FieldCow knows how to make and save money in Uncle Tom\'s mind so whatever FieldCow says Uncle Tom does. Hazlett has 4 years left on the contract, don\'t fire him Tom, we\'ll lose a bunch of money. OK, Arnold! We\'ll keep him.

Whether or not we like it, this team is going to be run like a car agency. There was a BIG thing on ESPN about the 69er\'s and the guy who is running that show since Eddie DeBartolo got singed by putting his fingers too close to the Edwin Edwards fire. DeBartolo\'s sister and her husband own and run the team now. They are charging players $.37 for a stamp to return fan mail, for God\'s Sake. They have also locked up the Gator Aide from the players. How chicken can you get? This is the Arnold FieldCow, Autoplex mentality and that is what Turley was talking about when he blew all over the organization. Same song, different verse.

Hazlett will stay, I hope and pray that he will do better and learn from dodging this bullet. I further hope that Benson will get rid of Baby Mule, LoomBoom, McCarthy, Sheppard, Moss, and Venturi. Personally, I hope that he demotes but not fires Venturi, because he is a fairly good position coach, and has been, he\'s just not a good coordinator.

Player wise, Brooks, Ruff, Hodge, Ambrose, Jones, Gandy, Riley, and Sullivan need to catch the bus. Ambrose needs to be made a scout or assistant coach.

For D-Coordinator, Mike Singletary. O-Coordinator from the Bills. QB coach, anybody else. Trade Brooks to Miami for the best draft choice you can get. I believe that Gandy needs to retire, Riley needs to go whereever, as does Sullivan, Hodge, T-Jones, and Ruff. I would give T-Jones one more year, in that he hasn\'t looked that bad this year and may come forward with a simpler system.

Sadly, I\'d trade Horn also, due to his age and the probability of injury next year. I\'d draft a stud linebacker, a quarterback (or trade for Rivers), and then buy or draft 2-3 high quality offensive tackles. I\'d put Bently back at Guard, and move Jacox to center, with Stinchcomb at the other guard. I\'d also look for a high dollar TE.

Hazlett could do well, assuming that you had a Scott Pioli as a GM who would actively and truly RUN the Front Office and pick FOOTBALL people to scout and evaluate talent. Hazlett would coach what he was GIVEN by the front office and be put as far away from selection as possible.

This may be a formula for success.
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Old 12-13-2004, 05:37 PM   #7
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I am 100% sooooo with you that this is the most talented team we have ever had-Danno

Beforeal this is not the best talent weve had you actually think this had more talent then diktas team :casstet:

Pre read what you write
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Old 12-13-2004, 07:23 PM   #8
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Gator, I\'ll agree with you on McCarthy. The offense has still been too sporatic to respect. McCarthy doesn\'t need to totally abandon the run in the 1st quarter. Opposing defenses have been so keen on the passing game because they know that we won\'t try to run often.

I have a feeling that Haslett doesn\'t truly believe in this team. He\'s the opposite of what John Fox is doing in Carolina. Rarely have I seen him on the sidelines talking to players. It\'s either that or he doiesn\'t have a great amount of respect for them. Either way, just a random thought...

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Old 12-14-2004, 06:17 AM   #9
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Whew ... so many problems.

Here\'s some ideas, debate as you like:

- Keep Haslett, fire Venturi and McCarthy. Sign Mike Singletary as DC and Gary Kubiak as OC (if they\'ll come).

- Deal Aaron Brooks to the Cards, Dolphins, Titans, or whoever else is interested for WHATEVER we can get out of him. Solid, veteran O-linemen or LB\'s are preferred, but draft picks are nice, too.

- Use the money saved by not re-signing Darren Howard to pick up a neglected, but talented, QB like Jon Kitna, Trent Dilfer, Kurt Warner, Mike McMahon, David Garrard, or even Jay Fiedler. Will Smith has developed nicely and should be able to start opposite Charles Grant next year.

- Abandon the \"need for speed\" offense and gear down to a more ball-controlled, short passing and running attack (something like what the Steelers do now). This would complement the lesser skills of our new QB and utilize Deuce and Karney. A simpler, less pass-oriented offense would also take some pressure off our O-line and keep our woeful defense off the field. Plus, short passes are about all Stallworth can catch, but he shows some potential for YAC.

- If we got some draft picks for AB, draft some damn defensive studs! Derrick Johnson is probably not gonna make it to us, but there are other good LB\'s in this crop and one of em\' should. Try for a good CB with our next pick, someone to complement McKenzie in the future. We could always move Ambrose to saftey for the short term.

- This ain\'t gonna be popular - Joe Horn has earned a big contract, but don\'t give it to him. We all love Joe, but father time is gonna be nipping at his heels soon. We sorely need to spend the money elsewhere. That said, if he\'ll stick around for a reasonable price (which he has in the past), by all means lock him up! We\'re gonna need some veteran leadership.

I realize there is much more work than this, but maybe it\'s a start. There would be growing pains, but no worse than the pains we\'re suffering right now in what should\'ve been a good season (especially with the NFC as shoddy as it\'s been).
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Old 12-14-2004, 07:25 AM   #10
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On NOLA\'s web page they are hinting about how Haz will probably stay, because if Benson goes and fires the coaches and spends all that money on that, his case with the state will look weak.

It\'s hard to sell yourself as a poor weak franchise, when you can afford to pay off a coaching staff and hire another one. Makes sense, knowing how Benson seems to think.

So we may have to get used to the fact that Haz will be around next year....probably. As much as I agree with you guys about responsibility, and Haz deserving the ax, if they demote Venturi and McCarthy and get some real coaches in, that will be good... a start.

If Haz is not leaving, what we need (IMO), is new Coordinators AND a GM that knows football. Haz should not have the final say in selecting players any more. He has proven his incapacity at this. That also has to change.

I am someone who defends AB, just because we suck so bad on defense, and it is hard to keep having to come back in EVERY FRIGGIN GAME, but I think it is time for a new QB.

Next off-season may be a good time to make a trade in one way. There are many teams who would love an AB, as much as y\'all can\'t believe it, so his value will be higher than usual. BUT if we get rid of AB, then what? Rebuilding year? If our defense doesn\'t really improve that much, do you really believe a Kitna can do better than AB with our crappy defense??

I don\'t think it will be an easy decision on AB. Sure WE (the fans) can get all emotional and ask for heads to roll. But if you are running a team, you have to look deeper and be level headed and see what our options are. Hopefully we can get a GM who can do that.

what I am waiting to see, is what kind of guys we can get in here as coordinators. mutineer10 I like your choices. Will Benson get quality or go cheap? We wait and see....
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