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Bold prediction: New Orleans Saints will make the playoffs

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By Brian Allee Walsh - Special to the Sun Herald

NEW ORLEANS

The naysayers are in full bloom. The doubting Thomases are out en masse. Murphy’s Law -- Anything That Can Go Wrong Will Go Wrong -- seems to be gaining momentum as training camp fast approaches.

Some believe the 2019 New Orleans Saints will not fulfill their Super Bowl aspirations. That 40-year-old Drew Brees is a descending quarterback. and the Black and Gold will fall victim to the NFC Championship runner-up “curse’‘ and miss the playoffs altogether.

I don’t share those beliefs.

Full Story - The Sun Herald

Report: NFL suspends full-time employment program for officials amid negotiations

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By Jason Owens | Yahoo Sports

It appears that the NFL won’t have full-time officials heading into the 2019 season.

ESPN reported Thursday that the league suspended a program employing some of the league’s officials full time as part of its negotiations with the NFL Referees Association.

League, officials working on new deal

The two sides are negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement to replace the one that expires on May 31, 2020.

The reported move by the NFL doesn’t mean that the league can’t reimplement the program that provided full-time employment for around 20 percent of the league’s 122 officials, according to the report.

Full Story - Yahoo Sports

ESPN shows Saints offense might not be that good

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ESPN staff writer Bill Barnwell has an annual list to help us keep things in perspective. If you think the Saints offense is good, you may be way off.

By Roy Anderson | WhoDatDish


*** WARNING: Satire ahead! ***
Sometimes the people who watch the same sports we watch and write about them are called sports journalists or analysts. Sometimes there are people like me who have a degree but not in journalism. I watch the New Orleans Saints and write about them and I’m called a blogger. I’ll frequently let analysts help me along in areas in which I’m not well versed.

ESPN staff writer Bill Barnwell came out, a few years ago, with a way of measuring how good an offense is based around how good an “offensive arsenal” a team has. It used to be that people were stuck in this mindset that it was all about wins and losses. Championships and what not.

In my day we got into things like ranking offenses and defenses by how much yardage they put up in a year or, for defenses, how little yardage they allowed. Maybe we’d get cute and make it about points. Who scored the most? Who allowed the least?

Full Story - WhoDatDish

Former UW football player Carl Granderson sentenced to six months in jail

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By Davis Potter | Casper Star Tribune

LARAMIE — A judge sentenced former Wyoming football player Carl Granderson to six months in jail Thursday morning in Albany County District Court, rejecting the terms of his plea agreement.

Granderson pleaded no contest to one count of sexual battery and one count of unlawful contact after informing the court of his intent to change his not-guilty plea in documents filed on his behalf earlier this week by his attorney, Meagan Overmann Goetz. Both Goetz and prosecutors agreed to the terms of the plea, which included one year of unsupervised probation and a mental evaluation to be completed within 60 days.

Full Story - Star Tribune

Pat Swilling to be Inducted into Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame

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By Ken Trahan | Crescent City Sports

NEW ORLEANS – As a third-round draft choice out of Georgia Tech, the New Orleans Saints believed Pat Swilling could be a good, solid player in the NFL. Little did the Saints know that Swilling would become the very best at what he did best.

Swilling’s excellence will be recognized on August 10 as he will be one of four standout local sports figures to be inducted into the Allstate Sugar Bowl’s Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Each year’s Hall of Fame class is selected by the Greater New Orleans Sports Awards Committee, a group of current and former media members who annually recognize a variety of award-winners, including the Hall of Fame, the Corbett Awards and the Eddie Robinson Award. The group also selects the Greater New Orleans Amateur Athlete of the Month each month.

A total of 26 individuals, including this year’s Hall of Fame class, and two teams will be honored at this year’s banquet.

As an outside linebacker, Swilling was the fastest, quickest pass rusher off the corner in the NFL. His speed was particularly accentuated playing indoors on the artificial turf of the Superdome.

Full Story - CCS

Espys: See Drew Brees's speech, his three kids Meet Zion Williamson in matching Tuxes the 2019 ESPY Awards

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By Alex Orozco and Justin Parham | Lafayette Journal & Courier

Former Purdue and current New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, attended the 2019 Espy, accompanied by his wife Brittnay and three sons.

After a successful college football career at Purdue, Brees was picked by the San Diego Chargers in the second round of the 2001 NFL Draft.

Brees is a Super Bowl champion and a six-time pro bowler.

What Espy Award did Drew Brees win?

Drew Brees won the ESPY for Best Record-Breaking Performance presented by the Hip Hop group "Migos". On Wednesday night at the Microsoft Theater at L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles.

Full Story - Journal & Courier

Saints offensive triplets ranked No. 1 in the NFL

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

The New Orleans Saints centerpieces on offense — quarterback Drew Brees, running back Alvin Kamara, and wide receiver Michael Thomas — received plenty of praise from NFL.com deputy editor Ali Bhanpuri. Bhanpuri surveyed the NFL’s triplets and found the Saints were an easy fit for the top spot on his list. He struggled to identify another team with a top-five talent at each of the positions considered (quarterback, running back, and pass catcher).

To create his list, Bhanpuri ranked the top player for each team at each position 1 through 32, with points values for each placement (so the top-ranked running back is worth 32 points, and the runner-up is 31 points). Quarterbacks were given a 1.5-times multiplier to emphasize their importance.

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

Saints offense keeps improving in latest ESPN rankings

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By John Sigler | Saintswire

The New Orleans Saints offense will open up training camp with a ton of continuity on their side. Only two starters won’t return from last year — center Max Unger, who retired to his family ranch in Hawaii; and tight end Benjamin Watson, who ended his own brief retirement for one last Super Bowl run with the team that drafted him, the New England Patriots.

In their place are a top rookie draft pick (former Texas A&M center Erik McCoy) and the best free agent on the market at the position (veteran tight end Jared Cook). Besides running back Mark Ingram, who was demoted to the second-string after his return from suspension last year (and has been replaced by free agent Latavius Murray), the rest of the offense is intact.

Full Story - Saintswire - USA Today

New Orleans Saints 2019 Offensive Line Outlook

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By Ian Riise | Last Word On Sports

The New Orleans Saints have long prioritized the talent level of their offensive line. Since 2006, several New Orleans offensive linemen have reached multiple Pro Bowls, including Jammal Brown, Jahri Evans, Carl Nicks, and Jermon Bushrod, all of whom were Saints draft picks.

As these players have departed or retired over the last decade, New Orleans has successfully replaced them with another top-tier group of starting linemen. However, one of their strongest pieces, center Max Unger retired in...

Saints linebackers have new-found stability

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By Les East | Crescent City Sports

METAIRIE – The Saints will enter training camp with one virtue among their linebackers that they have lacked the last two years – stability.

Head coach Sean Payton and the front office overhauled the unit after the 2016 season, tweaked it after the 2017 season and will have minimal change this summer compared to the 2018 season.

“There’s no doubt that stability has been built over the last two years,” said linebackers coach Mike Nolan, who joined the Saints at the same time the transition was beginning. “I think the other thing that helps in the stability is that they’re all intelligent football players. They’re all mature guys. They all accept their roles.

“They compete all the time and they’ve become very close. I think that’s why the group performs as a mature group because they’re mature people and that includes Craig Robertson.”

Robertson is the only linebacker who preceded the changes and he survived because in addition to being an outstanding special teams player he’s also one of the most versatile linebackers in a group that prides itself on its versatility.

Full Story - CCS

Drew Brees to Zion Williamson after both New Orleans stars win ESPYS: 'The city is ready for you'

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By Rod Walker | The Advocate

Drew Brees added another ESPY award to his collection.

The Saints quarterback won the award for Best Record-Breaking Performance on Wednesday night in Los Angeles during the ceremony that recognizes achievements in sports.

The award is for Brees surpassing Peyton Manning's 71,940 career passing yards to move into first place on the NFL's all-time list. Brees also became the NFL's all-time leader in completions, eclipsing the old mark held by Brett Favre. Brees broke the career passing yards record in a game against the Washington Redskins and the completions record in a game against the Atlanta Falcons.

Other athletes in the record-breaking performance category are University of Oregon women's basketball player Sabrina Ionescu, Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson, and Texas high school track star Matthew Boling. Ionescu broke the NCAA record for most triple doubles (men or women) with 13. Thompson made 14 3-pointers in a game to set an NAB record. Boling ran the 100 meters in 9.98 seconds, becoming the first high school to run a time under 10 seconds.

Full Story - The Advocate

Drew Brees wins ESPY for Best Record-Breaking Performance

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NewOrleansSaints.com

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees won the ESPY for Best Record-Breaking Performance on Wednesday night at the Microsoft Theater at L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles.
Hip Hop group "Migos" presented Brees with the award.

The ESPY award winners were selected by fans voting on ESPN.com. Brees’ award marks the fifth ESPY of his career as he won three in 2010 and another Best Record-Breaking Performance award in 2012 after breaking Dan Marino's single-season passing record.

“Thank you to the Who Dat Nation, the absolute greatest fans in the universe. Thank you to all my teammates," Brees said. "Those that were apart of this past season which was a special year, but really for the last 18 years. It's been an unbelievable journey and I want you all to know how much apart of this each and every one of you are, including the coaches and mentors who have been with me every step of the way. Thank you.”

Full Story - NewOrleansSaints.com

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