From Aints To Saints (a Little History Of The Team That Could)

Michael MerrillContributor IJanuary 25, 2010

41 years ago the Saints set out on a goal... to make the super bowl. The road for the Saints was not easy. The first game they played was in 1967 and was opened up by a 94 yard touchdown run by John Gilliam, but in typical Saints fashion they went on to lose the game 27-13 to the Los Angeles Rams in Tulane Stadium. At the end of their first season they finished 3-11. The Saints never finished higher than 2nd in their division until 1979. The Superdome was opened in 1975 and for the most part the Saints have played there ever since. In 1980 the Saints lost their first 14 games, a local sportscaster Buddy D advised all Saint fans to wear paper bags over their heads, this could have caused the club to be called the "Aints".But even though the Saints fans would wear their paper bags they still bought tickets and cheered on their Saints

In 1985 Tom Bensen (the current owner) bought the Saints and hired Jim Mora as the head coach. Two years later the Saints had their first winning season which lead to their first playoff birth, the Saint fan began to believe. Mora coached the Saints until the middle of the 1996 season which the Saints finished 3-13, but he lead them to 4 playoff births, but also never won a playoff game. For the Saints thing did not look good. In 2004 the Saints won their first playoff game against the St. Louis Rams, but the next week they lost to the Vikings.

In 2005 disaster struck the city of New Orleans, Hurricane Katrina. The Superdome roof was blown off and housed many homeless people from the city. The Saints also had no place to call home. They played games all over the place like Tulane Stadium, and in San Antonio; there were rumors about the Saints moving to San Antonio but it never happened. In the 2005 Season the Saints finished 3-13. The Saints fired their head coach and hired Sean Payton. In 2006 the "dome" was back in service and the Saints opened it with a game against their bitter rivals the Atlanta falcons, which they won 23-3. Since then the Saints have made it to the NFC championship once but lost to the Chicago Bears.

If you had told me that last night the Saints would be playing for a chance to be in the Superbowl i would have laughed, but it was true the Saints found themselves pitted against the Vikings with the legendary QB Brett Farve. It was the first time ever that the Saints had home Field during the NFC Championship, this set a record for the viewing audience for any NCF championship game ever. It was a tight game but with a minute to go the score was tied and Brett Farve was effortlessly leading the Viking down the feild on a very tired defence. I was not at the game but u could feel the crowd beginning to fade. On a 3rd-down Brett Farve step out of the pocket and rolled to his right, throwing off his back foot the ball was intercepted by Tracy Porter. The Saints had reason to believe again. The game went into overtime. The Saints won the coin Toss and Drew Brees took the Field (his career has been alot like the city of New Orleans) and drove the Saints to the Vikings 22 and went for it on a 4th and inches, Thomas leaped over the line and set up a 40 yard Field goal try for a kicker who's season long was a 38 yarder. After a Vikings timeout Hartley lined up his try and knocked it straight down the center leading the Saints to their first Superbowl. THE SUPERDOME ERUPTED with all the pain and joy that the city of New Orleans had been holding in for 41 years. The last commit that Brees had was we have one more goal.