Some people are fans of the New Orleans Saints. But many, many more people are NOT fans of the New Orleans Saints. This 2019 Deadspin NFL team preview is for those in the latter group. Read all the previews so far here.
Your 2018 record: ROLL THE TAPE!
While the Saints and their fans spend the rest of eternity wallowing in their own victimhood, let’s quickly take note of all the ways New Orleans very much deserved to lose the NFC title to the Rams in January. First of all, head coach and way-too-strict lifeguard Sean Payton called two pass plays when the clock was under two minutes and the Rams only had two timeouts left. The Saints were already in position to easily kick the winning field goal at that point, but Payton elected to gift the Rams extra time on the back end so that he could go try on Affliction shirts after losing or something. Secondly, that pass should have been picked off by Nickell Robey-Coleman. Even Troy Aikman saw how bad the throw was. Thirdly, these assholes only had home-field advantage for the NFC title game because they benefited from two awful, called pass interference penalties in Week 16 against the Steelers, and they still couldn’t hold onto a 13-0 lead once they got to that title game.
Fourthly, after the Saints still managed to take the lead despite all that, their shit defense let the Rams go 45 yards in less than 90 seconds to tie the title game and send it to overtime, which is how that now-infamous noncall on the ensuing drive ended up mattering at all. Oh, and they didn’t bother to run the ball in overtime either. Payton called two straight passes. The second one was picked off, and you all deserve to live with what happened thereafter. Way to go, fuckbrains. The worst Super Bowl of my lifetime came two weeks later, and you think the refs are the ones to blame for it happening.
Your coach: Sean Payton, who will definitely dine out on that no-call for the next decade, just as he dined out on winning an actual title a decade prior. All he has to do is say, “Well obviously we would have won it all if not for those meddlin’ refs!” and every gumbo-brained Saints fan will gladly agree and hand him a free bottle of Cabernet doctored with another bottle of absinthe. They’re gonna hang a banner for this imagined title, Auburn-style. You watch. Facts are helpless in the face of such bold idiocy.
Payton still fancies himself a mischief-maker because he drinks, and because he stashes girlfriends in the Appalachians like they’re stills of precious moonshine, and because he destroys fire alarms when they displease him, and because he brought strip club dance floor leftovers into the locker room to motivate his charges (didn’t work). But he just got his visor handed to him, at home, by a much younger coach who gleefully capitalized on his stodgy fuckups. Payton is a perfect fit for New Orleans in that he fancies himself more cultured and raucous than everyone else, only to be the same kind of humorless assbro as the rest of his contemporaries. Take that visor off and his brain turns to mush and oozes out of his ears.
Your quarterback: Drew Brees, who for breaking the NFL’s all-time passing record got the same certificate they give dog owners whose pets graduate obedience school. Drew Brees has made nine figures playing football and has the respect of everyone in the sport and STILL feels compelled to shill for Herbalife. That’s the mind of a champion. When Drew Brees retires, he’s 100 percent going to become one of those guys who only wears tactical Oakleys and takes trips to Thailand to try to find sex traffickers. The Saints have kicked the can down the road on Brees’s contract so much that they’re gonna owe him half the franchise in dead money when he finally retires.
Your backup is Teddy Bridgewater, who is in New Orleans ostensibly to be heir apparent to Brees, but who won’t be able to fill the role because his kidneys will get mysteriously struck by lightning just a few months before he’s poised to do it. Your wild card QB is Mormon Tebow Taysom Hill, who exists mainly so that Payton can send him in for gadget plays to get his own dick hard. I am already dreading other teams copycatting the Taysom Hill subsection of Payton’s playbook, as if Kordell Stewart had never existed.
What’s new that sucks: I could go through all the cursory moves New Orleans made to a roster that remains very much championship-caliber. They signed Malcom Brown away from the Patriots. They had to let Mark Ingram walk but managed to replace him with Latavius Murray, who occupies the role of hammer well enough. They signed Jared Cook in a doomed attempt to fill the perma-hole left when they traded away Jimmy Graham. They drafted and signed various linemen to keep Brees’s Wranglers clean. But what’s REALLY new in New Orleans is the turbo-charged inferiority complex that has already metastasized into a lasting obnoxiousness, as shown here:
Henry A. Jaume, Sr. Age 65, Passed away on Sunday, February 3, 2019 at 1:00 P.M. Determined not to watch Super Bowl LIII.
I’m gonna have to spend an entire season hearing about how VENGEANCE is now this team’s 12th man, before they lose to the fucking Eagles or something in the Divisional round.
What has always sucked: Leave it to Saints fans and Pats fans to make me actively cheer for Roger Goodell. Thanks to the NFC title game fiasco, the rest of us are about to be subjected to instant replay reviews of pass interference that will absolutely not prevent what happened in January from happening again, and that will inevitably go against these same Saints in highly inopportune moments. All because you pathetic LOSERS couldn’t get over one blown call. Even the Saints’ lawyers are ready to move on from all this, but you cannot dissuade a Louisianan from pursuing the pettiest, stupidest possible form of retribution for any perceived slight. Here’s black magic for you: a terrible bit of officiating, the kind that can occur at any time to any team, is mixed into a bubbling cauldron with a hearty spoonful of misplaced pride and 10 years’ worth of Spygate grievances, all to summon a lifelong grudge that means absolutely NOTHING to anyone else. I went half-deaf just under a year ago, and as such I relish the fact that I can now more easily tune you jackasses out.
Honestly, I wish the fix had been in during the NFC title game. I wish Goodell had ordered the refs to swallow their flags in that game because yes, he wanted to spare the rest of America from this fanbase’s bullshit. Then you people would KNOW we have it in for you. You would know that you’re so awful, we’d gladly let the Pats win their 80th ring just to shut you the fuck up, not that you ever would. It says a lot about how annoying Saints fans are that it might have actually been a WORSE outcome if they hadn’t gotten boned by that PI call and gone on to beat the shit out of the Pats.
And so I am happy that horrifying alternate reality never came into form. Today, I am HAPPY for poor refereeing. I’m gonna throw a big festival to honor Bill Vinovich and hire Trombone Shorty to provide the music. I’ll serve PB&J sandwiches and call them po’boys just to piss you off. Fuck you layabouts gonna do about it? Build a mean float? Tough titty. You guys act like you’re the only team that’s ever been denied justice by this sport. GUMBO GUMBO GUMBO MAH MAWMAW SAID THE ESTABLISHMENT CAN’T HANDLE WHO DAT NATION. You’re nothing special and you never have been. Your performance at the end of playoff games this decade proves it.
Also, the Superdome is ass. The security at that stadium takes forever to get through for no reason. The book Black Sunday featured terrorists trying to blow up a blimp and kill everyone at an NFL game at Tulane Stadium, and I’d still have rather been at that game than at any game at the Superdome. Fuck the Superdome, fuck the Saints, fuck the whistling guy, and hail to the refs. Go suck on a rat head.
AD left you.
What might not suck: Alvin Kamara is lightning in cleats and no franchise has deserved a cool player less since Marshawn was a Seahawk.
HEAR IT FROM SAINTS FANS!
Refs didn’t make us throw an interception in OT.
We are 3 weeks out from the NFC Championship and my husband is making us watch the first AAF game as we speak. If that no-call hadn’t happened there’s no fucking way he’d be doing this to us right now.
Being a Saints fan now means cheering for a team that will inevitably give any opposing team its most glorious moment.
I was at the NFC Championship game, 10 rows up in the lower bowl. That was my Christmas present. If it’s any consolation to a nation that had to endure our bitching, every single person I know who was at that game caught the worst flu of their life afterwards.
Brees will use the money he recovered from the bogus jewelry sales to keep hawking supplements so shady you can’t get them at GNC.
Ownership is actually paying attention to basketball now. Dear God.
Sure there’s the missed pass interference call, but it takes a special kind of bad to:
1. Even throw the ball in that situation instead of running out the clock/forcing timeouts
2. Let them score and force overtime
3. Get the ball first only to throw it right back to the other team
4. Let them score again
When I was a kid, my mom would take me and my sisters to her parents’ house every Sunday because my dad would sit on the couch and yell for three hours. The only time I’ve ever seen my father drunk was during the River City Relay, as he sat with his back turned to the TV saying, “They’re going to lose.” He now DVRs every game and plays solitaire on his computer for three hours and then only watches if they win. Love you, Dad.
Drew Brees has 6 million passing yards and twice as many touchdowns and I can’t remember a single one of them. There’s no ‘The Catch’ and no last-minute Hail Marys, just an endless accumulation of yards and scores that only add up to the Saints scoring 55 points and still losing to, I don’t know, Tennessee, because Sean Payton thinks defense is optional. The only plays anyone remembers from this team are when they shit the bed or get jobbed.
Mike Thomas will catch a potential game winner in the NFC Championship game and be shot in the fucking face by a DB and it would get waved off for some shit like “There is no existing rule stating you cannot shoot players in the face.”
I’ve been a misplaced Saints fan since I was a kid and in that time I’ve gone from getting made fun of, to being called a front runner, to people feeling genuinely sorry for me. I had feelings once. The Saints are the Bizarro World Patriots.
People in NOLA still complain about the time Andrew Jackson came to town and made them stop drinking in the streets. They will continue complain about that missed DPI call until the very last inch of the city is underwater. And then the alligators will continue to complain about it long after humanity is extinct.
We’re one more star-crossed playoff exit away from being the louder, drunker version of the Buffalo Bills.
The one time that I did get to watch the great Drew Brees hoist the Lombardi Trophy over his head should have been one of the highlights of my life, but all I remember now is that my beloved wife was crying her eyes out in the bedroom because she’s a Colts fan. Fuck my football life.
Just when the last y’at from White Flightsville finally, FINALLY stopped bitching about Bountygate they just had to epically fail on that damn PI call. We will never, EVER stop talking about that. Many years from now (I hope), New Orleans will join Atlantis under the waves and there will be some poboy-sucking swampman in a Jimmy Graham jersey stuck in the last bubble of air in the Superdome telling the guy next to him how we were robbed and DEFINITELY would have beaten the Patriots that year. Bring the gentrificating fires and end this misery.
I would rather be strapped in a straitjacket and be forced ludovico-style to watch John Carney’s missed extra point, the Beast Mode run, Vernon Davis’ winning TD, Marques Colston fucking up the lateral, and the Minneapolis Miracle on a continuous loop while Kurt Warner and Brett Farve repeatedly punch me in the ballsack than have to talk about the no-call one more goddamn time.
What’s worse than having to hear about it non-stop for the past six months is that the mindset that developed after Bountygate is rearing it’s ugly head again. A majority of the fans I’ve talked to think that the NFL has a vendetta against the Saints and want to keep us out of the Super Bowl. Blown calls happen guys. Get over it already and prepare for the season.
Here are all of the things that deserve to drown slowly in a cesspool of Bourbon Street bile this offseason:
Bill Vinovich & crew for countering a textbook case of pass interference with a textbook case of willful ignorance
Roger Goodell for having his testicles retreat so far up into his abdominal cavity that he simply forgot to issue any direct acknowledgment that the refs blew that call when even Nickell Robey-Coleman was basically putting a full-page ad in the New York Times about it after the game
Both 2019 L.A. Rams fans for foregoing decades of false hope/misery and getting mild enjoyment out of one of the greatest achievements in football as a result
Us delusional, thin-skinned Saints fans for wasting our limited national sympathy through lawsuits, billboards and Zapruder film studies on something everyone in the entire world already agreed was an atrocious non-call that will never be undone
My Patriots-fan friend who texted his condolences to me immediately after that game while also going out of his way to point out that the Saints made some bad play calls in the final two minutes. He then got to watch his team trip ass-backwards into their ninth Super Bowl in 18 years only because Dee Ford did not know what a line of scrimmage is
Everyone else who also said the Saints should have just run the ball three times and kicked the field goal as though they have no recollection of what our one-minute-drill prevent defense has looked like for the past decade
All of us who naively thought we’d gone through our most devastating playoff loss ever in 1991
All of us who naively thought we’d gone through our most devastating playoff loss ever in 2011
All of us who naively thought we’d gone through our most devastating playoff loss ever in 2012
All of us who naively thought we’d gone through our most devastating playoff loss ever in 2018
And for the future, all of us who thought we’d had our most devastating playoff loss ever in 2019 because I can guarantee you that Drew Brees’ floating head on a robot will be here in 2050 to make the go-ahead TD pass only to be undone when Bill Vinovich’s 23andMe clone inadvertently slaps the ball out of the receiver’s hand while signaling for an incompletion. That ball will then be fumbled out of the back of the end zone and returned to the Falcons at the 20 yardline (because that stupid rule will absolutely still exist) to kneel out the clock and then go on to win their first Super Bowl. I will now take up smoking so that I’ll be dead by then.
We like to think that our head coach is like an HBO character. A tortured genius, tragically flawed. However, he’s coasting on success from ten years ago while alienating more and more of the talented people around him by trying to control and take credit for everything. I guarantee you he has flipped over a table at a team dinner.
Our GM’s like a kid playing Madden that will not play past the first year of dynasty mode. The year after Drew Brees retires, Mickey Loomis will still ask him to restructure his contract to create cap room. It’s probably a good thing we’re over the cap every year, since every time we have even a sliver of room, we blow it on an overpriced veteran who will be a healthy scratch by week 8.
It’s amazing how much more I like the Saints now that I live outside of Louisiana and don’t have to deal with the fans. The most reasonable thing a Saints fan has ever said to me was “Black on Black? At Night? In the Dome? Can’t lose Brah”
We deserved the last two playoff losses just based on our reaction to Bounty Gate. It’s not Goodell punishing us in a grand conspiracy (Lol at the thought of him being competent enough to pull that off). It’s karma from the universe for being so truly awful.
After the Rams game, when I finally picked my head up off the bar and checked my phone, I had two text messages. The first was from another Saints fan that said, “Between this and last year, it’s proof that Roger is punishing us for Bounty Gate”. The other was from a Jets fan that said “Never Love Anything”. That’s how bad we are. We make Jets fans look like the reasonable adults in the room.
Pointing any of our flaws out (like that we actually blew that game outside of the pass interference call) gets me accused of being a Falcons fan.
We deserve this and so much more.
Submissions for the NFL previews are closed. Next up: Los Angeles Rams.