Saints’ Look To Second Home Game For Some Much Needed “Home Cooking”

By Gregory Moore
Updated: October 12, 2005

SAN ANTONIO, TX— Last Sunday was probably one of the most painful things to watch as a sports fan. In other time I wouldn’t mind seeing a team get drummed but the New Orleans Saints’ 52-3 loss to the Green Bay Packers was a little hard to stomach and probably that was because for right now, the Saints are playing two more ‘home’ games right here in good ole’ San Antonio. It was painful to watch because many football fans who were never Saints fans have ‘adopted’ them this season. In essence it was almost akin to having the San Antonio Spurs lose to the Los Angeles Lakers this season and that is with this current team’s make up.

Far too many excuses may have been made as to why the Saints are a bad football team. I cannot go that far and say the team is a ‘bad’ football team. Is this team under some serious stress factors right now? No doubt about it but these players are professionals and they have to perform their job to the best of their ability. Even with the extenuating circumstances, one has to believe that somehow this current Saints roster can at least win all of their ‘home games’ left and come out with a .500 record. That is why this Sunday’s game against the Atlanta Falcons is probably so crucial. The Saints need a quality win against a division rival and this could be the ‘tonic’ that Jim Hasslett is looking for.

But how does this team rebound from the Lambeau drumming they received this past weekend? How can Aaron Brooks and Deuce McAllister lead the charge against a Falcons’ team that almost beat the Super Bowl champs of last season? It comes in the form of a pill and it is probably the most simplest of clichés in the sports world. They win the game on a desire to win.

Yes it is that simple but it will probably the hardest thing for a football team to do at this present time. In far too many ‘win one for the Gipper” speeches, the ‘desire’ reference seems to get used more often than the Flex-All 44 that is sitting on the trainer’s table. But probably for the Saints it may be the only variable that could help their season at this point. This team needs to play under a set of variables that is like a bad B movie. This team is basically in a nomadic state and that state of fluctuation is probably waning on them just a little bit.

So if the Saints can get any solace this season, it will have to come from the two remaining games in San Antonio and definitely the four games out at Baton Rouge. Any other time being 8-8 would not be a successful season in the NFL but I think given the circumstances that this team has found itself in, being .500 and winning all of your ‘home’ games would not only be a successful season, it would be a monumental event in the franchise annals. Yet for that to happen, the Saints must defeat the Falcons this Sunday and that is something that could be done if the team has the desire to do so.

Vince Young May Still End Up Being A Wide Out. As talented as Vince Young is as a college quarterback, I still cannot see him being a starter at the NFL level. Now if he became a wide receiver, that is a different horse of a different breed line. Young’s athletic ability is what has gotten him to be one of UT’s best signal callers in quite some time but that does not simply equate into being successful at the pro level. The Mack Brown offense has not produced any NFL signal callers who are currently starting in the league. James Brown didn’t make it. Major Applewhite didn’t cut it with New England and right now Chris Simms is still wearing a baseball cap and toting a play call board on the sidelines. Young doesn’t have the mechanical skills to single himself away from those UT greats and they all ran successful offenses.

What many who want to see Young be a signal caller need to realize is that unless UT is running a variation of a ‘pro style’ offense, it would be very difficult for him to come out and be a QB with his athleticism. Because Young is not your prototypical quarterback, many scouts may want him to become a wide out Pittsburgh’s Antwaan Randle-El. Randle-El was a successful signal caller for Indiana but when he was drafted, the team converted him into a wide receiver. For Young, that could very will be the case considering the fact that he is 6’6” and has good 40-yard speed.

The question then boils down to this about Young’s ability. Should he become more orthodox in his mechanics or should he leave open his options if he wants an NFL career? My thinking is that if Young really wants to be an NFL signal caller, he will have to work on his mechanics and that is mainly his throwing motion mechanics and possibly his ability to read defense coverages.

It may sound like I’m picking on the semantics of Young’s game but let’s be clear on one thing: he is an unbelievable football talent. Whether Young’s talent allows him to bark signals on Sunday is still a debate.