When New Orleans was hit with Hurricane Katrina, all eyes were there. They watched the horror as the Superdome became a symbol of death, decay and unrest. After all of the turmoil happened, there was still something that had to be done. The Saints had to find a new home.
After about a week of negotiating, the Saints found a temporary home at San Antonio’s Alamodome and LSU’s Tiger Stadium. Things started to look good for the Saints and New Orleans, as the city dried up, and the Saints won their first game against the Carolina Panthers 23-20 with a game-winning field goal. However, there was another hurricane on its way. Her name was Rita.
Hurricane Rita struck and while not as devastating, it did cause substantial flooding in New Orleans. This prompted the first “home” game for the Saints to be played on the road in East Rutherford, New York. With the game going under the theme “Recover And Rebuild,” the Saints thought that the extra fanfare was too much.
“They made this seem like the Super Bowl,” quarterback Aaron Brooks said of the NFL and the hoopla after New Orleans lost to the Giants. “We played a team that outplayed us today, but it was way overdone. Setting up a stage, traveling out here was uncalled for.
“Try not to patronize us next time, traveling us to New York, saying we’re playing a home game.”
Even Coach Jim Haslett agreed.
“We were in the visiting locker room, on the visiting field,” he said. “It seemed like an away game.”
The Saints then went on the road to face a struggling Minnesota Vikings, only to lose by 17 points. The Saints seemed to slowly pick up the pieces though. They won their next game against Buffalo 19-7. It appeared as if the Saints had finally gotten back on track.
Meanwhile, in New Orleans, people begin returning to their homes to see what was left of their lifestyle. Returning home to broken homes, dreams and dead bodies, the citizens of New Orleans and Louisiana needed some entertainment from the Saints.
“I lost my house, job and my beloved city, because no matter what anyone says or does it will never be the same,” said Jennifer Pye, a diehard Saints fan, on a blog on nola.com. “The Saints are all I have left of New Orleans and my daddy.”
Unfortunately, the city of New Orleans may not have the Saints for long. Mayor Ray Nagin unleashed some anger towards Saints owner Tom Benson after hearing of plans to permanently relocate the team to San Antonio.
“For them to be openly talking to other cities about moving is disrespectful to the citizens of New Orleans, disrespectful to the Saints fans who have hung in with this franchise through 30-something years under very trying times,” Nagin said at the Cafe Du Monde reopening in the French Quarter.
With all of the talk of moving, the Saints are barely moving themselves. The Saints are on a two-game skid after losing to the Falcons 34-31 after a penalty on the defense gave the Falcons another shot, and hitting, the game-winning a field goal.
The penalty left Haslett irate.
“I’m telling you it was a flat-out (expletive) call,” Haslett said.
The Saints are traveling to St. Louis to play the Rams on Sunday at 12 p.m. The Rams are currently 2-4, the same record as the Saints. This game will help determine which team will go farther in the season, as most teams cannot lose more than four or five games to make the playoffs.
However, the Saints are currently at the bottom of the NFC South Division, sporting a 1-2 home record and a 1-2 away record. The first place team is Tampa Bay with a record of 5-1. The Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers are currently tied for second place in the NFC South.
The teams with record worst than the Saints are the Arizona Cardinals (1-4), the Green Bay Packers (1-4), the Minnesota Vikings (1-4), the San Francisco 49ers and the Houston Texans (0-5).