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WhoDat 02-24-2003 08:30 AM

Since Jim Haslett arrived in New Orleans the Saints have lost some significant talent, but overall they have been able to sign just as much or more. Deuce, Dante, Joe Horn, Aaron, Charles Grant, etc etc etc.

However, there is one major area of this organization that has been hemorrhaging talent. The front office. Randy Mueller, Ron Zook, and now Mike Riley. These types of people tend to be overlooked and simply a footnote compared to the big name player signings and draftees. Unfortunately, it's guys like Mueller, Riley, and Zook that impact a team's ability to succeed more than any player - especially in the long run.

The league is finally starting to wise up and realize that coordinators are more important to players on most teams than head coaches. Likewise, the talent scouts and men behind the scenes who handle the business side are very important in keeping players happy and in uniform.

Over the last two years, the Saints have lost three of the men who I consider to be three the top five or six most important people to the organization's ability to succeed. They have replaced these men with no one. Mueller was replaced by Loomis and the front office restructured. They did not sign anyone new. Zook was replaced by Venturi - an obvious mistake that looks like they won't even try to repair this year - and no one else was hired. Now Riley is going and again, no talk of a new hire.

The Saints could hover around .500 again next year and if so, I can tell you exactly why right now. It's not players. It's not talent on the field. Parity runs rampant in the NFL. Every man on our defense could start and play well somewhere else. It is coaching, the system, etc. It is the front office. That is why the Saints can't make the next step. And since they appear to be letting another good coach go (and probably just promoting someone already on staff who isn't qualified to fill his role), I, for one, am very worried about their ability to be successful next year.

Jazezy 02-24-2003 10:33 AM

You make a good point Ron Zook was very important to the Saints as well as Randy Mueller. But Mike Riley this guy hasnt done anything to improve the secondary i am personally glad to see him go, maybe we could get Deion Sanders to be our secondary coach he knows a thing or two about the position. I wish the saints would have fired rick venturi this guy tries to be so much like Zook but just dosent have a clue, the saints should have scraped him and went and got Ray Rhodes.

WhoDat 02-24-2003 01:24 PM

Mike Riley wasn\'t there yet, but I always thought of him as an up-and-coming. Maybe that designation is off base, but the way that the team seems to get rid of its top management talent, I wouldn\'t be surprised.

billyh1026 02-26-2003 09:25 PM

Mike Riley needed to go. He was hired for some god-awful reason. Maybe a favor to him. It was understood that he\'d only be here a year. Until he got the head coaching shot wherever it came open for him. Strangest coach signing I\'ve ever seen....

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