Are New Orleans Saints the NFL's Dirtiest Team?

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IDecember 19, 2011

NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 04:  Cornerback Tracy Porter #22 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates with teammates strong safety Roman Harper #41 and cornerback Jabari Greer #33 after an interception of quarterback Matthew Stafford #9 of the Detroit Lions in the fourth quarter at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 4, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

The NFL is a pretty dirty place in general.

Nearly every week we see a dirty play or hear about one from a distressed NFL player.

But when a team is called out in back-to-back weeks, you start wondering if a line has been crossed.

The New Orleans Saints are this team right now.

Last week, the Tennessee Titans accused the Saints of actually blowing a whistle on the sideline to confuse the defense, which was backed up by Dean McCondichie of Titans All Access.

McCondichie, who put a microphone on offensive lineman Michael Ross during the matchup, said, via ESPN:

"During the game we heard this whistle blowing, but they weren't stopping the game, they just kept playing. They were loud enough for me to hear it on the microphone on him. They were all trying to figure out why play continued. I asked them if they knew where it came from and they said the New Orleans bench. Nobody saw it, but it was pretty loud and it was definitely a whistle."

On top of that, Titans receiver Nate Washington accused Saints veteran safety Roman Harper of being a dirty player after Harper prevented Damian Williams from scoring by pulling his facemask.

Said Washington:

"Honestly, he's a dirty player. We watched film on him, he's dirty. And I don't appreciate it, I'm going to step out in public and say it: He's dirty."

Now, after the Minnesota Vikings' 42-20 loss to the Saints on Sunday, star running back Adrian Peterson is blowing the whistle on the Saints.

Peterson, who was coming off a high ankle sprain that caused him to miss three weeks, said Saints cornerback Jabari Greer twisted his ankle while he was at the bottom of the pile on Sunday.

Said Peterson, via the Times-Picayune:

"I came into the game kind of expecting that coming back from a high ankle sprain. Guys are going to try to take their shots when we're on the pile and try to twist it up and things like that.

"I felt like it kind of got overboard. I got up and kind of got in his face. Thank God I was able to keep my composure."

That's two incidents in two weeks, and maybe we should start looking at the Saints as a dirty team.

At the same time, this is not the first team that has been called dirty. Ugly things happen in games all the time, particularly in a pileup. Even the least dirty players can engage from time to time.

One thing's for sure: the Saints apparently don't care what anyone says. They are going to play the way they play.

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